As a small business owner, it is important that you are aware of all mandatory regulations that affect your business. One such regulation for employers in Washington is providing workers’ compensation coverage for all non-exempt employees. Today’s post discusses some general information related to workers’ compensation insurance, and highlights certain individuals who are not required to be covered by workers’ compensation insurance.

What is workers’ compensation insurance?
Workers’ compensation provides no-fault insurance coverage for most employers and workers in Washington state. Workers that are unable to work because of a work-related injury or occupational disease may be eligible for partial wage replacement benefits and medical treatment for injuries that occur as a result of their employment. Employers are required to…

Read More

Kyle Hulten recently wrote on the iVLG blog about the value of contingent contracts when negotiating agreements. It’s a great read and below I’ve highlighted some of the key takeaway points from Kyle’s article.

What is a contingent contract?

You probably guessed it. A contingent contract is a contract that includes contingencies, i.e. future events that may occur and change the terms of the agreement. Some of the most well-known contingent contracts are in professional sports. Athletes often receive additional money if they achieve certain goals. Another common example is in the employer-employee context. You may hire an employee and incentivize that employee to work hard by providing a non-discretionary bonus if the employee performs beyond a certain target, e.g. if employee…

Read More

A recent post on the inVigor Law Group blog explored the idea of “agency liability.” Agency liability refers to liability for actions of employees and owners of a company when acting on behalf of the company. I’ve highlighted some of the key points for you in today’s post.

When two people (or companies) agree to allow one person to act on behalf of the other party, the acting party is referred to as an “agent.” The other party–the one that authorized the agent’s actions–is referred to as the “principal.” Why does this matter to you? Because figuring out the agency relationship is important in determining whether contracts and agreements that your agent enters into are binding.

Two Types of Authority

Agents can act…

Read More

In a recent article in the Puget Sound Business Journal, an experienced employment attorney discussed the problems with businesses that think their employee handbooks are going to reduce their legal risks. Heather Bussing, a practicing employment and business law attorney for over 25 years, says that you should trash your employee manual because the fact is that all employees aren’t the same and the law doesn’t say we should (or must) treat them all the same either. 

For many business owners, the comfort of using an employee handbook is that the employees and employer will all be on the same page in terms of the company’s policies and practices. Bussing says that creating a robust handbook for your employees is worthless….

Read More