HR News


Employee Benefit Trends for 2021

Good news, not all trends are pandemic related!  Many of the 2021 employee benefit trends are related to employee issues that have arisen due to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as accommodating employees working remotely and keeping employees healthy and productive during these challenging times.  While some of these benefit trends will fade when the pandemic does, others may become the “new normal” in employee benefit programs.   According to a 2019 Employee Benefits Survey administered by […]


IRS Lowers Standard Mileage Rate for 2021

The business mileage rate will be $0.56 cents per mile   For 2021, standard mileage rates for the use of cars, vans, pickups, or panel trucks will be:   $0.56 cents per mile driven for business use, down from $0.575 cents in 2020.  $0.16 cents per mile driven for medical or moving purposes, down from $0.17 cents in 2020.  $0.14 cents per mile driven in service of charitable organizations, which remains unchanged.  While the standard mileage rates […]


EMPLOYERS MAY REQUIRE WORKERS TO RECEIVE THE COVID-19 VACCINE

As vaccines become available, workplace vaccination requirements may expand.  The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has released guidance under federal law that makes it clear that employers may require workers to receive a COVID-19 vaccine – with limited exceptions. This is also true under Oregon law.     Employers may require employees to get a COVID-19 vaccination before returning to a worksite if the absence of a vaccination constitutes a direct threat to other employees in the […]


HR Highlights within the Coronavirus Relief Package

Within the bill to fund the government and provide continued economic relief in response to the pandemic, there are expansions of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), and an extension of the refundable employer payroll tax credit for paid sick and family leave through March 31st 2021.   Here are the highlights of what employers need to know … 


Your employees’ data just got safer.

IRS New Rule: OK to hide SSN/TIN Numbers on W2s   The IRS has approved a rule that allows Social Security [SSN] and Taxpayer Identification [TIN] numbers to be “masked” or truncated on W2s issued after December 31, 2020. The SSNs and TINs can now be printed on W2s with the first five numbers represented as “X” or “*” to conceal the actual numbers.   Example might read: XXX-XX-0000 or ***-**- 0000.  What this means for employees: […]


WATCH FOR THESE UPDATES

Cardinal Services will keep you informed on the various laws and regulations due to expire on December 31st, 2020.  We anticipate last-minute changes, extensions, or cancellations of several COVID-19 related emergency laws and regulations previously enacted by Congress and state legislatures on these and other regulations:   Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)   Dependent on Congress extending this emergency law, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) paid leave requirements will expire on December 31st of this year. FFCRA requires certain employers to provide employees with paid sick leave or expanded family and […]


Productivity tips for working remotely.

TELEWORKING  During this challenging time, employees are now being asked to work from home. Here’s a list of tips that can help both employers and employees be more productive when working remotely.   TIPS FOR SUPERVISORS WHO MANAGE REMOTE WORKERS  Profiles of successful employees who work remotely have the following attributes: are proactive and self-initiating by nature, are project-driven and comfortable working alone- but know how to communicate regularly to a supervisor or team.  Remote employees […]


Thought COVID-19 Was Done? Not So Fast.

Here Are the Latest Updates. Update as of November 12 – Please note that in the draft rules OSHA set, the due date to get your updated COVID-19 plan in place was by November 21st. That deadline has been pushed back to December 21st.  Update as of November 6th – Oregon OSHA has published documents related to these new rules. Click here for the published documents.https://osha.oregon.gov/rules/advisory/infectiousdisease/Pages/default.aspx Note they also have a link to a new […]


UPTICK IN COVID-19 RELATED ISSUES

After a reasonably quiet summer, Cardinal has seen a recent spike in COVID-19 related issues. Among them, are concerns that employees are contracting the virus outside of the workplace, or have been in contact with positive COVID-19 cases. This has resulted in concerns from co-workers about how, and when these employees can return to work. Consequently, we have also seen a sudden increase in the amount of emergency paid sick leave requests. It appears this […]


Handling Political & Covid-19 Workplace Discussions

Tips on keeping employees’ conversations on controversial topics civil  As employees return to the workplace, there may be heated discussions among co-workers concerning the upcoming elections, current events, or the pandemic. Due to this, arguments and outright hostilities may erupt. If tempers flare during these heated discussions, supervisors will need to know how to handle the situation. To reduce the potential for heated discussions, it is essential to have a policy in place regarding political […]