TPO's Employment Update

In this issue:


n Workers' Comp Reform

n SPHR/PHR Recertification Credits

n HR Rumors


TPO University 2004 Training Calendar


- a training series focusing on the regulatory compliance and HR best practices the information & skills supervisors & managers need to keep themselves and the organization out of hot water!

n Monterey - Aug-Sep.

n Gilroy - Sep-Nov.


- a training series focusing on practical leadership and communication skills to help managers develop or refine their effectiveness as leaders!

n Monterey - Sep-Nov.

n Gilroy - Nov-Dec.


n Workers' Compensation Management - August 19

n Excelling as a First Time Manager or Supervisor - September 14

n The Art of Effectively Managing Conflict at Work - October 12

n Motivating and Retaining Employees - November 10

n FMLA/CFRA/PDL Compliance - December 1


Words to work by:


"Organization is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it's not all mixed up."

~A.A. Milne

"It is better to ask some of the questions than to know of the answers."

~James Thurber

"A leader knows what's best to do; a manager knows merely how best to do it."

~Kent Adelman

"Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors."

~African Proverb

Introducing TPO's First E-News Issue!

It is our pleasure to provide you with our initial monthly EMPLOYMENT UPD@TE! We all receive a variety of electronic bulletins and newsletters, some we read, some we delete. Our goal is to keep you informed about important and timely employment and HR news and reminders in an easy-to-read, "heads up" format. One that you will look forward to receiving and won't delete! Please scroll down to the bottom of the document if you prefer to unsubscribe. Your feedback and comments are always welcome. Enjoy!


HR Regs: Got Workers' Comp Reform?

BalanceYes, CA got it!  But what does that REALLY mean?

As you undoubtedly know, our new Governor signed Senate Bill 899 (SB899) on April 19, 2004. A number of changes were enacted; some immediately and some in future dates, most of which benefit employers offering long-awaited relief! Following is a very brief overview of the highlights changes that we believe to be of most significance for employers:



Employers No Longer "Guilty Until Proven Innocent:" all parties are treated as equals versus greater weight being given to the injured worker.

April 19, 2004

Pre-designation of Personal Physician:  employees may only pre-designate their personal physician when the physician:

n Is part of the employer's health insurance plan, and

n Agrees to the pre-designation.

April 19, 2004

Apportionment of Permanent Disability: physicians are required to note the approximate percentage of disability caused by the work-related injury and approximate percentage caused by other factors (including prior work-related injuries/illness).

April 19, 2004

Partial Liability: employers are only liable for the portion of disability directly caused by the work-related injury (regardless of date of injury).

April 19, 2004

Returning Disabled Employees to Work: employers with 50 or more employees are encouraged to return disabled employees (those who have been declared "permanent and stationary") accordingly:

n Incentive: a 15% reduction in permanent disability payments is offered for restoring a disabled worker to the same job, same pay or a modified job that pays at least 85% of the previous job and lasts at least 12 months.

n Penalty: a 15% increase in permanent disability awards is provided to disabled employees who are NOT offered return to regular or modified work by their employer.

July 1, 2004

Light/Modified Duty Programs: employers with fewer than 50 employees are offered subsidies for workplace modification and special equipment costs associated with providing light/modified duty to a temporarily disabled worker.

July 1, 2004

Indefinite Medical Control: employers that establish an approved provider network* for treating work-related injuries will gain unlimited medical control where the employee did not pre-designate (in writing) their personal physician.

* Approved provider networks MAY include Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO's) or Health Care Organizations (HCO's) regulations to be published by November 1, 2004 please stay tuned!

January 1, 2005

There is so much more! 

Reserve your seat today for the following training opportunities:

1.   SB 899 Community Awareness Briefings 

Hear from leading experts in Human Resources, Insurance, and Occupational Health on the specifics of SB 899 and how to "make the most" of the regulatory changes. Click here for more info!

2.  TPO Workers' Compensation Management Workshop 

SB 899 is only one piece of the puzzle your organization's bottom line is significantly impacted by the internal administration of your Workers' Comp claims. Is day-to-day management of work-related injuries the best it can be? Don't miss TPO's half-day program on proven strategies for effective management of the entire system from pre- to post-injury.  Click here for more info and to register!

HR Reminders: Time for Your PHR/PHR Recertification?

Approval SealIf you plan on recertification, TPO University is the way to attend cost-effective, award-winning training programs while accumulating those vital recertification credits! (Or maybe you prefer to sit through that national exam again?)

SPHR/PHR (Senior Professional and Professional in Human Resources) is the most well-respected national certification program demonstrating the holder's mastery of the HR body of knowledge and the challenge to stay informed of new developments in the HR field. Today there are more than 70,000 HR professionals certified by HRCI. Recertification may be obtained by accumulating and submitting 60 educational hours every three years.

Both of TPO University's SERIES training programs, "HR-101" and the "Management Excellence Series" (MES), are now approved for recertification credit hours. HR-101 is a series of six, three-hour programs focusing on the fundamentals of employment law and the HR best practices of hiring, performance management, leaves of absence, and separation of employment. MES is a series of eight, three-and-one-half hour programs focusing on leadership skills such as communication, teamwork, conflict resolution and motivation. HR-101 and MES are approved for 16.5 and 25.25 recertification credit hours, respectively. TPO offers these programs in both Monterey and Gilroy.

For more information about HR certification and eligible training programs, please visit HRCI and TPO online.


HR Rumors: Get Your Facts Straight from the Experts!


I heard that California employers are required to post an IWC Wage Order  "where it is available for all employees to view."


Most California employers are required to post one of 17 IWC Wage Orders that regulate wages, hours and working conditions in specific industries or occupations.
Give us a call if you have a question about which Wage Order you need to post.

15 additional postings are required besides the appropriate wage order. Order yours online!

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Employment Upd@te is a publication of  TPO HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT. Copyright 2004. All rights reserved.
The information provided is designed to be accurate in content. TPO provides human resource consulting and is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. Readers are advised to consult legal counsel on matters involving employment law or important personnel policies & practices before adoption or implementation.