• Legal Issues


    1. OFCCP Reduces Veteran Hiring Benchmark

      For the third time since 2014, the OFCCP has reduced the annual Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act hiring benchmark.

    2. USCIS Makes Notable Changes to H-1B Visa Rules

      The USCIS issued a new rule in November that impacts the H-1B visa program. Included in the new rule are two notable changes.

    3. Legal Issues: The STEM OPT Rule Impact

      Two immigration attorneys review how the new STEM OPT rule impacts international students and employers.

    4. How to Write a Reference Letter

      This article provides guidelines for those writing reference letters, including questions to consider and legal and liability issues.

    5. Diversity Recruiting: How Does Fisher Impact Affirmative Action in Employment?

      In June 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the affirmative action admissions plan at the University of Texas. Attorney Ed Easterly looks at what Fisher v. University of Texas means for affirmative action.

    6. U.S. Supreme Court Upholds University of Texas Admissions Plan

      In a 4-3 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the affirmative action admissions plan at University of Texas. The case, Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, revolved around race in the admissions process. The University of Texas system provides for race to be considered as one factor in admissions.

    7. OFCCP’s Revised Functional Affirmative Action Program Directive Goes Into Effect

      The OFCCP has made revisions to its Functional Affirmative Action Program directive. The updated directive received approval from the Office of Management and Budget, and went into effect in late April 2016.

    8. Legal Issues: Marijuana in the Workplace

      The legalization of recreational and/or medical marijuana in many states raises a series of issues for employers and employees alike. How are drug testing policies affected? Must employers accommodate use of marijuana for medical purposes? What does legalization mean for federal contractors?

    9. Legal Issues: International Students and Unpaid Internships

      International students have to approach internships with caution. Whether an international student in F-1 or J-1 status requires work authorization is not governed by whether the student is paid. An international student may need proper F-1 or J-1 work authorization even for unpaid work. Only if the work is properly “volunteer” unpaid work under DOL rules can the international student perform the work without proper work authorization.

    10. Legal Issues: References

      The key for reference providers is to know what information should and can be disclosed, and what legal ramifications arise as a result of improper disclosures.

    11. Appeals Court Vacates Ruling in Unpaid Internship Case

      On July 2, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacated a lower court decision that Fox Searchlight Pictures had improperly classified former workers as unpaid interns rather than employees, calling the U.S. Department of Labor’s standards out of date and “too rigid for our precedent to withstand.”

    12. FERPA Primer: The Basics and Beyond

      FERPA was enacted to protect the privacy of students and their parents. It is designed to ensure that students and their parents can access the student’s education records and challenge the content or release of such records to third parties. This article summarizes the key points of FERPA, notes the 2008 and 2011 changes to the act, and highlights how career services practitioners can ensure their institutions and offices are in compliance.

    13. Legal Q&A: Can a student or new graduate volunteer to work unpaid for an employer to gain experience?

      Although some recommend a student or new graduate volunteer to work unpaid to gain experience, it is illegal for-profit organizations to have “volunteers” perform work.

    14. Legal Issues: Internships

      Recent court decisions and lawsuits make it prudent for employers and career services alike to understand the legal issues surrounding internships.

    15. Legal Q&A: Can a career center prescreen candidates for an employer? Can faculty prescreen for an employer?

      Can a career center prescreen candidates for an employer? Can a faculty member prescreen candidates for an employer? If the career center or faculty prescreen candidates they are acting as an employment agency, and the relevant laws that apply to an agency would apply to the center or faculty member.

    16. Legal Issues: Diversity Recruiting

      Equal employment opportunity and nondiscrimination are an important part of the recruiting and hiring process. Career services practitioners and university relations and recruiting professionals should be aware of recent legislative changes to established laws.

    17. Legal Q&A: Are employers required to interview international students?

      Employers are not required to interview an international student who has an F-1 or J-1 visa, even if the student is otherwise qualified for the job. Although employers can refuse to interview or hire international students who do not already have some form of permanent work authorization, most cannot stipulate that U.S. citizenship is a job requirement.

    18. Legal Issues: Job Postings

      Before posting job descriptions and opportunities, career services staff should be aware that there could be legal problems lurking in some of the job requirements. To avoid those problems, all postings should be reviewed thoroughly.

    19. Legal Issues: The Affordable Care Act: What Employers, New Hires, and Interns Need to Know

      The Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare, will have a significant impact on individuals entering the work force as well as employers. The ACA is a set of health insurance reforms intended to make healthcare more accessible to Americans.

    20. Legal Issues: Navigating the Interview Process and Avoiding a Legal Landmine

      “When did you graduate from high school?” “Do you have any children?” “Have you ever been arrested?” These questions all seem innocuous. However, the issue is who is asking the question, where are the questions being asked, and why. If these questions are asked during the interview process to a potential applicant, an employer may end up in legal hot water.

    21. Relationships Between Workers and Hiring Organizations

      In today’s marketplace, college students may be offered a wide variety of employment opportunities. The following information should help career services professionals advise their students on the nature of these opportunities.

    22. Legislative Issues: Higher Education Act (HEA) Reauthorization

      The Higher Education Act (HEOA) requires every institution of higher education in the United States that receives federal funding to disclose information on, among other things, college costs, graduation data and other consumer information, emergency procedures, and fire safety reports.

    23. Legal Issues: Background Checks

      Employers use background checks to determine if an individual is suitable for a position within the organization. Recently, however, employers have been running into significant roadblocks in the use and application of background checks, and some are now being challenged in the courts for conducting background checks on potential applicants.

    24. Legal Issues: Understanding Copyright Laws And the Impact of the Digital Age

      What materials on the Internet are copyrighted and can you repost them? This article discusses copyright online and issues surrounding it.

    25. Legal Issues: Interviewing and Hiring International Students

      Employers need to know how to determine if an international student will require visa sponsorship—and career services professionals also should be aware of this process so that they can effectively advise these students.