Employment

Why

TOP PROBLEM

“Will you fire someone for me?”

Often when an employment law issue arises it’s uncomfortable, stressful, and maybe even awkward for CEOs, business owners, and HR managers. There are plenty of emotions and personalities that can create a tornado of disaster in your workplace if HR issues aren’t handled properly. You’re thinking, “What can we do so we don’t get sued.” You’re also thinking about what’s best for your company and your employees. However, are you following the law? HR headaches can lead to sleepless nights and a toxic work environment that is unpleasant for all employees. Call our employment law attorneys today to handle your HR headaches and make your office a place that’s happy, healthy, and somewhere people actually want to go every day. We spend a majority of our lives working – your employees shouldn’t hate their jobs. Happy employees mean happy executives, happy customers, and happy clients, which leads to a happier life – worth it.

How

SOLUTION

Our employment practice legal teams in Sioux Falls, Sioux City and Omaha represent and work closely with CEOs, business owners, executives, human resource management, and staffing agencies to both prevent and solve HR issues. We understand that employee matters can be sensitive and are equivalent to a ticking time bomb when they’re ignored versus resolved.

The Goosmann employment law team has years of experience as business executives with HR roles and working with various employers and employees on a variety of HR issues. Our team is equipped with bilingual attorneys to help meet the needs of your diverse team. We understand the world of human resources and there is no issue too big to conquer.

Our employment team advises, supports, and defends HR departments as well as representing key executives and employees in administrative complaints and litigation. We are experienced, ready, and willing to handle employment administrative complaints, litigation and human resources advising. We know witnesses, business operations, and facts of cases matter. We anticipate litigation. We conduct investigations. We conduct training at Board meetings, management meetings, and employee meetings. Lean on us with your employment legal needs. We are HR’s first call. Contact us today and read how we’ve helped create happy healthy work environments for our clients.

What we do.

PROBLEMS AND HOW WE SOLVE THEM

“If I hire someone that is under a non-compete clause, will I get in hot water?”

A non-compete clause is a great way to retain key employees and ensure that your trade secrets and “secret sauce” aren’t spilled to your competitors. You don’t want your competitor to have the upper hand. However, if you’re the employer hiring someone that is under a non-compete clause, will that get you into a legal mess? Sticky situations like this happen often and we’re here to bring clarity to your situation. Contact our Sioux Falls attorneys, Sioux City lawyers, and Omaha attorneys today and read our blogs about non-compete clauses.

 

“If my best sales person goes to work for a competitor, what can I do?”

We get it. You feel stressed, sad, and possibly angry that your best sales person just left to work for your biggest competitor. Not only did your company lose a great employee, but now you’re wondering what your competitors will find out about your company and how they might use that trade secret information to their advantage leaving your business in the dust. Contact us to discuss your options and let us help keep your company’s trade secrets safe. Read our blog here.

“If I terminated a C-Level Officer and now the officer sues the company for board decisions spanning the last decade, what do I do?”

You thought they were gone for good, but the high-level employee or officer you just fired is back for revenge. Now you’re being sued for wrongful termination. A ghost from the past returns and you have to face it. What do you do? Call us today to help with your defense claims and read these blogs about employee retaliation.

“If my business partner is not following our company policies, what should I do?”

Setting a good example starts at the top, and when a business partner isn’t following company policies it trickles down to other employees who now don’t see your policies as a priority. This way of thinking infects your workplace and can be difficult to clean up. How do you tell your partner to follow the rules? We understand this may be an awkward conversation. Give us a call for help getting your team to follow company’s policies and procedures. We will help with both creating your company policies, updating your employee handbook, and training your team on your policies and procedures. Read our blogs about company policies –

“A large number of my employees speak primarily Spanish. They are good workers, but I am concerned we are not adequately communicating our company’s rules and policies in a way they can actually understand, can you help?”

Is your company struggling with a language barrier between you and your employees? This is a common struggle for many employers without a translator on staff. We can assist your company with translating your rules and policies for your Spanish speaking employees. Our Sioux City, Omaha, and Sioux Falls lawyers close the translation gap within your workplace and find creative and effective ways to communicate with your team so that everyone is on the same page when it comes to workplace safety, confidentiality, anti-harassment, and other policies and procedures. Give us a call today, we have bilingual attorneys ready to speak with you and your team! Read our blogs.

“If my employee is pregnant, calls in sick over and over again and is out of PTO, what can I do?”

Expecting a new bundle of joy is an exciting time for your employee and the entire office. However, you and the expecting employee shouldn’t be feeling the growing pains at the workplace. What are the laws that an employer has to follow when it comes to expectant mothers? We know that this can be a touchy subject for employers and employees, but one that can’t be overlooked! Call our team of employment attorneys today to help ensure you’re following the law and read our blogs about employees who are expecting.

“A former employee is saying bad things to our customers. Can I do anything about employee retaliation?”

Got a former employee “smack talkin’”to your customers? You may or may not be at a loss for words, but dishing more dirt will land you in a deeper hole then where you started. Call our Sioux Falls law firm, Sioux City law firm, and Omaha law firm to help put an end to your former employee’s retaliatory comments.

“How can I retain my key employee?”

You feel like you hit the jackpot! Your key employee is on fire and you have no idea what you’d do without them on your team. The thought of them ever leaving gives you a sick feeling followed by sadness and fear. You want to keep your rock star, but how? There are multiple ways to help retain your key employees including work culture, compensation and benefits, non-competes and key employee agreements, as well as other various creative solutions to make your key employees feel loved, wanted, and needed. Give us a call today to discuss ways your company can retain key employees and read our blogs about employee retention.

“Will you fire someone for me?”

Whether you’re someone who hates firing people, or you’re sure that if you handle the firing yourself it won’t go as planned, give us a call. We know firing isn’t easy nor enjoyable, but that’s one of the many things we help our clients do. You probably have questions about firing – and we have the answers! Call us today and read our blogs on firing 101.

What we offer

SERVICES

“What do I pay my employees and what benefits should I be offering?” Our employment law attorneys help develop a compensation plan for your company and analyze which employee benefits would be of the most value to you and your team. All the options that are out there can be overwhelming for CEOs and business owners, so call us today to help you plan and make the decision easier on you. We also help develop Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOP) for corporations to enhance their company benefits.

How we can help:

  • Employee benefits and options
  • Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOP)
  • Stock-Based Qualified Plans
  • Compensation systems
  • Executive compensation
  • ERISA
  • ERISA Litigation
  • Employee Benefits Disputes
  • Health and Welfare Benefits
  • Qualified Retirement Plans
  • Benefit Plan Governance
  • Employee Benefits for Governmental & Tax-Exempt Employers
  • Profit-Sharing & 401(k) Plans

Read our blogs for more information about compensation planning and employee benefits.

Don’t Roll Back Your Employee Benefits: Consider Walmart’s Fixed Shifts

Growing Your Company with ESOPs

Should My Company Offer an ESOP?

 

Time, Resources, Repetition, and Patience. That’s what goes into employee training and without it, your company could experience poor employee performance, inconsistencies in your product or service experience, safety hazards, harassment claims, and employee retaliation. Creating a training program for your new employees and experienced veterans helps ensure that your customers, clients, and employees get the best experience possible while providing a happier and healthier work environment. So who has the time and resources for training? Our employment law team knows that employers and HR departments have a lot of responsibilities for their employees and we want to help create a training program that can be easily implemented by your team. We can develop a training program that is unique, creative, and fits your company’s needs, culture, and industry. Call our Sioux City law firm, Omaha lawyers, and Sioux Falls attorneys today and read our blogs about employee training.

How we can help:

  • Development of employment training programs
  • On-site employee training
  • HIPAA Privacy & Security training
  • OSHA & Workplace Safety training
  • Management Training
  • Preventative Practices
  • Anti-harassment Training

Read our blogs:

How to Train a Superstar Employee

Training Employees in a Language and Vocabulary they Understand

Implementing Anti-Harassment Training in the Workplace

 

How do you keep rock stars on your team? There are a multiple ways to help retain your key employees from work culture, to compensation and benefits, non-competes and key employee agreements, as well as other various creative solutions to make your employees feel loved, wanted, and needed.

We also help your company develop diversity strategies to enhance your company culture, values, and community. At Goosmann Law diversity is a part of our core values and we want to help our clients create the same value of diversity within their business. We are members of the National Association of Minority and Women-Owned Law Firms and have experience with the positive impact of diversity on companies and their employees.

Give us a call today to discuss ways your company can retain employees (aka rock stars) and increase diversity in your business.

How we can help:

  • Guidance on employee retention
  • Diversity strategies
  • Corporate diversity counseling
  • Company branding

Read our blogs:

Right & Wrong Ways to Retain Key People: Top 3 Reasons Your Employees Feel They Work at Alcatraz

How We Keep Our Sioux City Law Team Motivated

Contracts – a legal document that most people hate to read and review. Add on the word employment and you have a recipe for “not so fun”. We love writing and reviewing contracts and can help you with your employment contracts to ensure both yourself and your company are protected.

How we can help:

  • Employment contracts
  • Non-compete agreements
  • Severance agreements
  • No solicitation agreements (employees or current customers)

Read our blogs:

Are new employers liable when they hire workers with previous non-competes?

Can My Company’s Non-Compete Apply to All Competitors?

Fired and Rehired: Employee’s Non-Compete Expired

Can a Non-Compete Turn an Independent Contractor into an Employee?

Can Employers Make Non-Competes a Condition for Continued Employment?

Does a LinkedIn Request Violate a Non-Compete?

How to Avoid Boilerplate and When to Get that Contract Reviewed

 

We are HR’s first call when an employment defense claim tries to slow your business down. We are on the employment defense panel of insurers. We also represent private companies in their HR disputes including staffing agencies. Our employment litigation attorneys know witnesses, business operations, and facts of cases matter. We anticipate litigation, and conduct investigations, and attended Board meetings.

How we can help:

Defense claims and litigation involving:

  • Fair Labor Standard Act (including wage and hour and exempt employee issues)
  • equal pay
  • employment discrimination (based on race, sex, sexual harassment, pregnancy, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, age, and genetic information)
  • harassment claims
  • retaliation
  • wrongful termination
  • unemployment compensation
  • Employee Retirement Income Security Act
  • FMLA
  • Employee Fraud
  • OSHA
  • EEOC
  • State civil rights commission responses

Read our blogs:

Red, White, and Sued: Is There a Place for Politics in the Workplace?

Top Reasons CEOs Get Sued—and How to Avoid Them

 

Wondering if your employee handbook covers all the bases? Does your company have updated policies that are compliant and enforced? If you answered “no” or “I don’t know” chances are your employee handbook and company policies are thin and outdated. Our employment lawyers review your employee manual and policies while checking for gaps that could increase your company’s liability. We then access your company and employee’s needs within your unique industry to update your employee policies and handbooks. We ensure your policies are compliant with the law as well as creating a barrier to protect you, your company, and your employees. Give us a call today to put us to work for you!

How we can help:

  • Employee policies
  • Employer best practice policies
  • Employee manuals
  • Employee management handbooks
  • Promotion policies
  • HIPAA Privacy & Security
  • Family & Medical Leave Act
  • OSHA & Workplace Safety
  • Personal Time Off (PTO) Plans

Read our blogs:

Must an Employer Follow its Policies?

Workplace Drug and Alcohol Policies

Red Flag for Employer Confidentiality Policies Confidentiality Policies

Do Your Employees Hate Trump? Comb- over Your Social Media Policy before the Caucus

Employer’s Internet Policy Violated the National Labor Relations Act

Guns at Work: Is Your Employment Handbook Loaded to Fire?

Defend Trade Secrets Act: Update Your Employee Handbook to Protect Your Trade Secrets

Does Your Employee Handbook Need an Update?

 

During the Obama years, the government significantly increased its oversight activities in assessing company administrative procedure compliance with applicable federal and state laws. The agencies have also increased their hostile and aggressive tactics in investigating employment claims. It can be both overwhelming and intimidating when a government agency has informed you that it is initiating an investigation to determine if you have violated its compliance requirements or its employment laws. Let the experts help you! We have proven success in helping our clients investigate the claims made by government entities, whether it be DOL, EEOC, OFCCP, INS, or state government agencies, evaluate risk, and serve as your advocate when making the argument in front of the appropriate agency. We also help you asses risk before a claim is made by reviewing current company systems, documentation, policies, filings, and culture. Give us a call today, whether you want to make sure you are prepared, or if Uncle Sam has already pointed his finger at you!

How we can help:

  • I-9 Compliance Audits
  • Family & Medical Leave Act
  • Defend local, regional, and national EEOC investigations

Read our blogs:

EEOC Study: Preventing Harrassment in the Workplace

Five Things to Know about the EEOC’s New Rules on Employer Wellness Programs

Attorney-Client Privilege Protects Company Internal Investigations

Revised Form I-9 to be used for all new hires in the U.S. starting January 22, 2017

 

You have a problem employee that has got to go. You’re losing sleep over the thought of firing the employee. You’re also hiring for a new position but want to make sure your hiring process is seamless. We help our clients through every step of the hiring and firing process ensuring compliance and preparing agreements – something that is dreaded by most, yet we are happy to take the stress off your shoulders. Call us today to help with your companies hiring and firing needs.

How we can help:

  • Risk assessment and mitigation
  • Security and employee safety assessment
  • Preparation for action
  • Affirmative Action compliance
  • OFCCP Compliance
  • Discipline, discharge & restructuring
  • Hiring for success
  • Employer interview techniques
  • Hiring for competency and personality fit
  • International employment

Read our blogs:

Sioux City Law Firm Explains Firing 101

5 Steps to Fire a Long-Term Employee

Alcoholic Commercial Driver Fired After FMLA Leave

Is Everyone Replaceable, even Justice Scalia? Why You Should Hire Slow and Fire Fast

How to Fire a Conspiracy Theorist

How To Fire Your Mom When Your Family Business Goes Bad

Fired? Don’t Steal Corporate Information On Your Way Out The Door

 

Human Resources… People Problem Solvers… Team Counselors… same thing.

Our employment lawyers understand that HR departments play a lot of roles, many of which aren’t necessarily in the job description. We are here to come to the “HR Wizard’s” rescue!

We consult and advise HR Departments, HR directors and managers, CEOs, business executives, and business owners on HR and employment issues from problem employees, compliance, government investigations, changing laws, and lawsuits.

We also help in crafting strategy beyond legal matters. Our experienced HR Consulting Team can help you build a strategy and action plan that will help you attract on-board, engage, reward & recognize, and retain the best talent available in the marketplace. From best-in-practice recruiting models to employee engagement strategies to market-competitive compensation and benefit platforms, we can help you with every step of the employee experience!

How we can help:

  • HR Advising
  • HR Compliance
  • Employee Policies
  • Budget Planning
  • Company Branding
  • Government investigations
  • Defense Claims
  • EEOC Compliance
  • I-9 Compliance
  • OSHA Compliance
  • HIPAA Privacy & Security advising
  • Risk Management
  • Leave & Disability Management

If you have one, we can help you negotiate your union contract, provide best practices, or help formulate strategy for effectively managing your CBA. If you are looking for assistance in arguing a case in front of an arbitrator, we can do that as well! If you receive an unfair labor practice from the NLRB, we can help you defend your actions and effectively represent you in front of the NLRB or other government agencies. If you are non-union and trying to retain that status, we can assist you in formulating strategy to pro-actively remain non-union or fight an active organizing campaign.

“My employee is posting inappropriate photos on her social media accounts. I’m afraid it is giving my company a negative image. What can I do?”

Social media is a part of our society and it looks like it’s here to stay. Employers are experiencing an increase in social media usage in the workplace and an internet galaxy they feel they have no control over. Employers and HR managers everywhere have questions. So what can you do to control social media in your workplace? How do you maintain you’re a positive brand image on social, even through your employee’s accounts?

We have experience representing and advising employers on social media in the workplace. We work closely with our client’s team to update their employee handbook, including a social media policy and developing a team social media training. Call us today to help you and your company with social media in the workplace.

How we can help:

  • Create a social media policy individualized for your company’s needs
  • Review and update your company handbook
  • Develop a team social media training
  • Company branding
  • Read our blog:

Do Your Employees Hate Trump? Comb- over Your Social Media Policy before the Caucus

Resources:

Download our Social Media Policy Template http://lawyers.goosmannlaw.com/social-media-policy

“How do I keep my company’s trade secrets and proprietary information safe?”

Every company has trade secrets and proprietary information that serves as their “secret sauce”. You want to keep your “secret sauce” safe, secure, and confidential. What can you do? Call us! We will access your current situation for securing confidential documents and information and implement ways you can increase your business’s protection. From non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements to cybersecurity – we can help. Contact us today to keep your “secret sauce” protected and secure.

How we can help:

  • Trade Secrets
  • Non-Disclosure Agreements
  • Proprietary Information Handling
  • Cybersecurity
  • Unfair Competition
  • Restrictive Covenants

Read our blogs:

Five Steps to Guarding Your Trade Secrets

Defend Trade Secrets Act: Update Your Employee Handbook to Protect Your Trade Secrets

Red Flag for Employer Confidentiality Policies

 

Wage and hour issues have become increasingly complicated as new legislation was enacted during the final days of the Obama administration. How do I determine if an employee should be paid overtime or can be considered exempt from overtime? Can I use time-off in lieu of paying for overtime? Do I trigger compliance requirements based upon my employment population? Which state or federal laws do I use for determining base wages? Do I have to provide certain leaves, such as parental leave or FMLA? It can all be very frustrating! Let the experts at Goosmann help you navigate the wage and hour minefield and provide you the guidance and confidence you need to implement the right policies.

How we can help:

  • Wage & Hour
  • Leave & Disability management
  • Family and Medical Leave Act

How we can help

  • Sarbanes-Oxley

EXPERIENCE & CASE RESULTS

  • Sioux Pharm, Inc. v. Eagle Laboratories, 865 N.W.2d 528 (2015). Successfully argued corporate trade secret case before the Iowa Supreme Court, obtaining reversal of trial court’s decision regarding disclosure of client’s trade secrets.
  • Developed employee handbook for manufacturing company.
  • Worked with agricultural company to address employment law matters, specifically issues related to unemployment claims.
  • Successfully defended employer in Family Medical Leave Act case.

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