How Housebound People can Access Financial Planning Expertise

There are many people who are housebound for some reason. They may be physically disabled or care for a person who is, or they may have little children and no support, so they just can’t go out to attend a meeting with a financial planner. So how can these people access a financial advisor to get the kind of financial planning they need?

They can access the help they need in several ways. If they have a computer and internet connection they can go online to find the person they need. They can research the websites they find and then they’ll know if the person provides the following: –

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How to Handle Unfair Dismissal

How to Handle Unfair Dismissal

If you have recently lost your job and don’t know why, or think that you’ve been dismissed unfairly, there are things you can do about it. You may want to consult employment lawyers who will be able to tell you if you have any hope of getting your job back or of being compensated for wrongful dismissal.

What is unfair dismissal

It is important to understand exactly what unfair dismissal is. The definition may be different depending on what Australian state you are in. In Western Australia unfair dismissal is said to occur when an employee’s dismissal is oppressive, harsh or unfair. An example of this would be when there was no cause for the dismissal, or if the reason for the dismissal was not sufficient to have that result.

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How to Keep on Top of Employment Issues

Keep on Top of Employment Issues

Once, employees had no recourse for anything that happened to them in their workplace, whether it was an accident or some kind of unfair treatment from their employers. These days things are different. If something goes wrong that seems impossible to fix, you can quickly consult with employment lawyers and find out what your rights are and what the best way is to go about rectifying your situation.

Simply knowing what your rights are goes a long way towards ensuring you are treated properly, paid the right wage and are given safe and comfortable working conditions. While many Australian employees do know a lot about their rights, some do not for various reasons. Even lack of experience can lead them to suffering injustice unnecessarily.

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9 Tips for Growing Your Business

When you have a business, commercial lawyers are needed to ensure everything you do is legal and watertight, from setting up your business structure through to leases and contracts. But once your business is up and running, it may be that you decide that more growth is necessary to achieve your business goals. Again, legal help may be necessary to ensure everything is done properly and in a way that helps ensure the business has a solid base.

Most businesses, such as web designers need to achieve a certain amount of growth in order to remain successful, and one of the most important ways to do this is to expand your customer base. Even if you have many customers on your books, there will still be some attrition as people move, their needs change or they may decide to try out the competition. So it’s important to spend at least some time in getting more customers.

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With New Protections Tied Up in the Courts, Home Health Care Workers Aren’t Waiting Around

Home-Health-Care-Workers

From New York to California, domestic workers are fighting to make new rights a reality.

Almost two years after the Obama administration extended historic labor protections to the nation’s 1.79 million home healthcare workers, those new rights remain in limbo. In September 2013, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced plans to amend a longstanding regulation that has excluded them from earning the federal minimum wage, overtime pay, and compensation for travel on the job. For home healthcare workers in the United States—a group that is nearly 90 percent female—this move marked a significant step towards setting a floor of decent labor standards.

But the rule-change, which was set to go into effect on January 1st, now faces a challenge in federal court, and critics say state legislators are using the ongoing litigation as an excuse to avoid implementing the new protections. At the same time, given that most home healthcare workers are paid through Medicaid and Medicare—two underfunded public programs—many also worry that states will respond to the rule-change by curtailing consumers’ access to quality care. Activists across the country are working to pressure their lawmakers to reckon with these new standards and avoid potential calamity.

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Childcare Options for Parents Who Both Work

Childcare-Options

When you have children but need to go back to work it’s important to work out the right kind of care for them. Whether you have toddlers or your children are of primary school age, it’s important to know they will be cared for properly while you are at work. Sometimes, grandparents can care for them, but often they too, work, or else they are too feeble to manage to care for a lively toddler all day.  Here are some other childcare options.

Home day care

This is when a woman, often a mother herself, cares for other children in her own home. It is good because there is a family atmosphere and the groups are small, meaning your child will get the attention they need. Government procedures are in place for payment and to ensure the carer is a suitable person. However, if they are of a different culture to you, it is wise to make sure that this will not have a negative impact on your child. They pick up different habits very easily.

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Constructive Dismissal and What To Do About It

Constructive-Dismissal

If you are wondering whether your dismissal from work would be classed as unfair dismissal or constructive dismissal it is wise to consult good lawyers because not every state has the same laws. In Western Australia, the term constructive dismissal can be used to describe either one of two scenarios: –

  • You have been asked to resign by your employer for whatever reason. If you resigned at the request of your employer it is classed as constructive dismissal.
  • If you have been forced to resign due to the actions or conduct of your employer. For instance, the employer may have breached the terms of the employment contract, or even told you that the terms would be breached so you had no choice but to resign.

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10 Ways a Property Lawyer can Help You

Property-Lawyer

Whenever you have any kind of dealings with property, it is essential to consult with property lawyers to ensure everything goes smoothly. There are a great many laws involving property to protect buyers, sellers and anyone else who has anything at all to do with property. Not only will the right legal advice keep you out of trouble, it will ensure your dealings are successful, no matter what kind they are.

The right legal advice can be found in all manner of property dealings such as:

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Raising Core Standards: Increase the Minimum Wage

Raising-Core-Standards

Families cannot make ends meet at minimum wage jobs. Over the last forty years, the real value of the federal minimum wage has fallen by nearly 30%. If it had kept pace with inflation, it would be $10.58, instead of $7.25. The tipped minimum wage has been frozen at $2.13 an hour for 21 years; servers have 3 times the poverty rate of the rest of the US workforce. The public overwhelmingly supports raising the minimum wage; many believe it would help the economy by putting money in the hands of families who will spend it. Organizing efforts have helped pass minimum wage increases in dozens of states and scores of cities, providing a raise not only to minimum wage workers, but boosting wages across the low-wage job market. Higher city and state minimum wage levels also help create momentum for increasing the federal minimum; a proposed federal increase to $9.80 would raise the wages of 28 million workers in the US, boost GDP by over $25 billion and support the creation of over 100,000 jobs*

*Estimates by the Economic Policy Institute quoted in NELP’s Issue Brief New Minimum Wage Bills Would Accelerate Recovery and Improve Job Quality, August 2012.

What to do with Uncollected Goods in Business

When you are in business you’ll soon find out that there are laws about everything, which is good because it saves you having to work out what to do in certain circumstances and if you are not sure about the law for that circumstance, commercial lawyers will soon be able to tell you. Legal help will ensure your business runs like a well-oiled machine and has the best chance of success.

One question you may have is what to do about uncollected goods that are taking up storage room. Now before you call in the removalists there are a few things you should know. For instance, a business that does car repairs may be left with a car that has been repaired, but the owner has not come to collect it and you can’t contact them. That car is taking up valuable space in the workshop, so what can you do? Or if your business is a dry cleaners, what can you do with clothing that has never been picked up? What if you own a caravan park and campers have gone off and left their tent or other accessories behind?

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Fast Food Workers in 236 Cities Pull Off Largest Strikes Yet as Other Low-wage Workers Join Fight

Fast-Food-Workers

A hand-lettered placard, reading “McDonald’s: Stop Fooling Around, $15 and a union,” caught the spirit of the crowd of at least 3,000 protestors in Chicago for a march to a McDonald’s restaurant in the downtown Loop area connected to the Chicago Board of Trade. In 236 cities in the U.S. and roughly 100 more around the world from Sao Paulo to New Zealand and from Glasgow to Tokyo, according to protest spokespeople, fast food and other low-wage workers joined together to pressure employers like McDonald’s to raise their workers’ pay.

Organizers claimed that it was the largest protest by low-wage workers in U.S. history. And it may very well rank as one of the broadest global worker protests ever undertaken against multinational corporations—one reinforced by recent investigations and lawsuits in Europe against the company for violations of labor, health, safety, tax and other laws.

In Test for Unions and Politicians, a Nationwide Protest on Pay

low-wage-workers

The protest by tens of thousands of low-wage workers, students and activists in more than 200 American cities on Wednesday is the most striking effort to date in a two-and-a-half-year-old labor-backed movement that is testing the ability of unions to succeed in an economy populated by easily replaceable service sector workers.

Labor has invested tens of millions of dollars in a campaign for a $15-an-hour minimum wage that goes beyond traditional workplace organizing, taking on a cause that has captured broad public support. But the movement is up against a hostile business sector sheltered by a decades-old federal labor law that makes it difficult for workers to directly confront the wealthy corporations that dominate the fast-food and hospitality industries.

For political activists looking to the 2016 presidential campaign and beyond, the wage fight is coming at a potentially pivotal moment, the first concrete, large-scale challenge in decades to an economic system they view as skewed toward the wealthy.

McDonald’s Minimum Raise

McDonald-Minimum-Raise

The decision by McDonald’s to raise workers’ pay to at least $1 over the local minimum wage offers some help for the 90,000 employees at the 1,500 American restaurants run by its corporate headquarters, but the relief is minimal and leaves out the far greater number of workers at the company’s franchise outlets.

On average, the raise for eligible workers will lift pay to $9.90 an hour by July, up from $9.01, and to about $10 an hour in 2016. It does not apply to 660,000 employees at 12,500 McDonald’s franchises.

The increase follows moves by other low-wage employers but is more limited. It covers 12 percent of the McDonald’s work force and costs an amount equal to about 2 percent of profits in 2014. The recent raise at Walmart, to at least $10 an hour, covered nearly 40 percent of workers at a cost of about 6 percent of Walmart’s 2014 profits.

Clearly, if the McDonald’s raise were a response to the competition for workers, it would be bigger. And it does not come close to meeting protesters’ demands for $15 an hour, though the movement to improve fast-food workers’ pay has helped to push McDonald’s to this point.

McDonald’s to Raise Pay at Outlets It Operates

McDonald-Raise-Pay-at-Outlet

McDonald’s announced on Wednesday that it would raise wages and offer new benefits to 90,000 employees in the 1,500 outlets in the United States that it owns and operates, responding to competitive pressure from a tighter job market and to labor campaigns drawing public attention to its pay policies.

The decision, however, does not affect the 750,000 employees who work for the more than 3,100 franchisees that operate roughly 12,500 McDonald’s restaurants around the country.

The company will increase wages to at least $1 over the local legal minimum wage for workers in restaurants under corporate control to an average of $9.90 an hour by July 1. That average will increase to more than $10 in 2016.

Employees who have worked in company restaurants more than a year will also be eligible for paid time off, whether they work full or part time. An employee who works an average of 20 hours a week might accrue as much as 20 hours of paid time off a year, the company said.

Movement to Increase McDonald’s Minimum Wage Broadens Its Tactics

Increase-McDonald-Minimum-Wages

ATLANTA — On a recent Friday, Kwanza Brooks, a $7.25-an-hour McDonald’s worker, climbed into a 14-person van to take a four-hour ride from Charlotte, N.C., to Atlanta.

As she and other workers headed south, Ms. Brooks, a short, fiery woman, swapped stories with her companions about unsafe conditions and unfair managers. Upon arriving, they joined more than 400 other people — including home care aides, Walmart workers, child care workers and adjunct professors — at the Ebenezer Baptist Church, where the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had been a pastor.

The gathering on March 21 was in part a strategy session to plan for the fast-food movement’s next big wave of protests, which is now scheduled for April 15. But the meeting was also seeking to be something far more ambitious. Through some strategic alchemy, the organizers hoped the gathering would turn the fast-food workers’ fight for a $15 hourly wage into a broad national movement of all low-wage workers that combined the spirit of Depression-era labor organizing with the uplifting power of Dr. King’s civil rights campaign

Minimum Wage for New York City’s Tipped Workers Will Increase to $7.50

NY-Tipped-Workers

Continuing to push for higher wages for the state’s lowest-paid workers, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced on Tuesday that all of the waiters, waitresses and others who work for tips in New York City will soon get a raise of their minimum wage to $7.50 an hour.

The increase was ordered by the acting labor commissioner, Mario J. Musolino, and will go into effect at the end of the year. It will consolidate three categories of tipped workers — whose minimum hourly wages range from $4.90 to $5.65 — into a single class to be paid at least $7.50 an hour.

The governor appeared with labor leaders at a union hall in Manhattan to celebrate Mr. Musolino’s decision and to repeat his own call for an increase in the statewide minimum wage for nontipped workers to $10.50 an hour. Mr. Cuomo also restated his view that the general minimum wage in the city should be even higher, $11.50 an hour, because of the higher cost of living.

The statewide minimum is scheduled to rise to $9, from $8.75, at the end of the year. But Mr. Cuomo said that increase, which translates to about $18,000 a year before taxes, was insufficient

Final Retrospective

minimum-wage

In the wake of the great recession, a sense of righteous anger has spread through the public. The long-standing fact that millions of American workers struggle in jobs with wages so low they can’t provide for their families is taking center stage in our national political discourse. A growing awareness of the extent of economic inequality has galvanized a set of progressive political and social actions that seek to build a more just economy. In 2013 and 2014 alone, at least 12 cities and 17 states raised the minimum wage. Fast-food restaurant workers, who for several years have been organizing for union rights and raises to $15 an hour, went on strike in nearly 200 cities in 2014. Domestic and construction workers, long marginalized in the labor force, are joining together to win rights and recognition.

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Why You Need Commercial Lawyers When in Business

Whether you are starting up a new digital marketing business or running one that is well-established, you will need the assistance of commercial lawyers for a great many things. For one thing, your business must be compliant in all ways with the law for tax and other purposes or you risk heavy fines or even being shut down. And if you don’t heed the law in every business matter you risk compromising your business which can easily mean facing a lawsuit of some kind from employees or clients.

Here is how lawyers can help people in business: –

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A new effort to help black workers find higher-paying jobs

black-workers-high-pay-job

A year ago, LeDaya Epps of Compton was unemployed and raising three children on her own, struggling to keep her car running to search for jobs.

On Tuesday night, she was sitting in the U.S. Capitol for the State of the Union address, a guest of First Lady Michelle Obama. Through the help of community organizations pushing for greater inclusion of African American workers, Epps has earned a good paycheck for more than six months helping to build the Crenshaw/LAX light-rail line.

Epps’ improving fortunes stem from an approach experts say could alleviate persistently high unemployment in the black community. An agreement involving government, organized labor and community organizations has required contractors to provide more opportunities for disadvantaged workers to get jobs on the rail project.

It’s an effort to create pipelines for black workers into higher-paying industries such as construction. Without such intervention, success often comes down to connections rather than qualifications, saidLola Smallwood Cuevas, director of the Los Angeles Black Worker Center, an affiliate of the UCLA Labor Center.

“It’s a question of the social networks around the work,” said Cuevas, whose organization helped Epps find work. “How do you crack what has historically been a difficult industry for women, and for black workers in particular?”

NLRB hits McDonald’s as joint employer

NLRB-hits-McDonald

McDonald’s and its franchisees illegally retaliated against employees for participating in union-related activities, the National Labor Relations Board’s top lawyer alleged Friday in a case with sweeping industry implications.

NLRB general counsel Richard Griffin announced Friday he will issue 13 complaints involving 78 charges against franchises and McDonald’s USA, LLC.

Though many of these alleged labor violations were committed by independent franchise owners, Griffin ruled earlier this year that McDonald’s can be held liable for those actions as a so-called joint employer, leaving the corporatrion — and potentially other franchisors — exposed to such claims.

McDonald’s said the decision will “strike at the heart of the franchise system.”

“McDonald’s is disappointed with the board’s decision to overreach and move forward with these charges,” the company said in a statement.

“These allegations are driven in large part by a two-year, union-financed campaign that has targeted the McDonald’s brand and impacted McDonald’s restaurants,” it added.

McDonald’s argued it shouldn’t be held responsible for labor decisions made by independent franchise operators, but labor groups accused the popular fast food chain of “inventing a make-believe world in which responsibility for wages and working conditions falls squarely on the shoulder of franchisees.”

Fast Food Workers, Joined By Other Low Wage Workers, Strike in Record 190 Cities

FAST-FOOD-WORKERS-STRIKE

Two years after fast food workers in New York walked out of stores and restaurants throughout the city to demand $15 an hour and a union, their movement has grown and changed dramatically. That was evident on December 4, when fast food workers in approximately 190 cities went out on strike, according to organizers—the largest number so far.

In addition, since the “Fight for 15” came at a time of continuing decline in real wages for most Americans, the workers’ demands have triggered new, broad-based campaigns that are winning much higher minimum wages than anyone dreamed possible in many states and localities. Organizers claim that in large part thanks to this spreading campaign, nearly 7 million workers have received significant pay raises.

But the workers’ reliance on direct action, including civil disobedience that started last year and has been part of many protests and strikes since, has also inspired workers from other industries to join in, especially low-wage service workers who are largely interchangeable in the job market.

For example, according to organizers, as workers went out on strike at the super-sized “Rock ‘n Roll McDonald’s” in downtown Chicago during today’s actions, a convenience store clerk at a nearby BP station who had witnessed such protests before walked off his job and joined the fast food workers. Around the country, organizers said that burger cooks and cashiers were joined not only by convenience store workers but also home care aides, airport workers, dollar store and Walmart clerks, federal contract workers and even some adjunct professors.

Black Workers Matter

BlackLivesMatter-movement

Asserting that black lives matter also means that the quality of those lives matters. This report takes its title from the #BlackLivesMatter movement, which was founded following George Zimmerman’s acquittal of murder in the death of black teenager Trayvon Martin.

In the time since, #BlackLivesMatter has served both as an umbrella and a focus point for protest and activism in response to the violent deaths of black people across America at the hands of law enforcement officials. The movement hit a peak in the latter half of 2014 as grand juries failed to indict the police officers involved in the deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri and Eric Garner in New York City. The explosion of political protest that arose in Ferguson and other cities has inspired a new wave of activism that goes well beyond the individual cases of these black people who lost their lives.

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9 Ways to Expand Your Business

When you have a business there is nearly always one or more ways to expand that are not necessarily expensive – of course, many ways that are more costly. It is a great idea to consult with your business consultants and commercial lawyers and even with your accountant to ensure you don’t overestimate the amount involved and end up struggling to meet other payments and costs.

Here are 9 ways in which you may be able to expand, depending on your business model: –

  • Go online. Having a website will take your business to the next level, since these days so many people spend their time online. Your website must be responsive so it is easy to read on a small screen because people go online with their iPhones as much as a computer. You can have a landing page to harvest email addresses, or sales pages that enable customers to buy their goods directly from your business 24/7. If your website is international, make sure the goods you offer are allowed in other countries.

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How to Protect Your Small Business Against an Unfair Dismissal Claim

Unfair-Dismissal-Claim

No small business wants to have their reputation dragged through the mud due to an unfair dismissal claim against them, whether they have employment lawyers on hand or not. However, for example when you have a small SEO company there are always going to be employees that don’t do the work you expect of them, or that fail to give the value you wanted for your business in some other regard. What can you do?

Rather than risk putting your business at risk of a lawsuit for unfair dismissal, it is wise to protect it in the following ways: –

  • Make sure you understand what unfair dismissal is in a legal sense.
  • Have employment contracts that are fair and just, with all the fine details in them needed to protect your business.

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12 Tips to Get Through a Divorce Without Going Crazy

Divorce

There is no doubt about it, divorce is a stressful time, an emotional roller coaster that often makes you feel as if you are going crazy. That is why you will probably need advice from family lawyers to make sure you know exactly what you need to do to facilitate matters and to understand what your rights are.

It is a sad fact that many once happy couples get divorced and may think they will never be happy again. But life moves on and you will find as time goes by, you can adapt and have a life of your own once again. It may even be a better life than you had before.

Here are some tips to help you get through that divorce and come out the other side without having gone crazy.

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What Happens if You Get Caught Drink Driving?

drink-driving

If you have consumed alcohol and then drive a vehicle, you may find yourself on a drink driving charge. For this to happen, you will have been pulled over for a breathalyser test. If you fail the test, you’ll find yourself on the wrong side of the law and will need the help of criminal lawyers. The penalties for drink driving – also known as DUI (Driving Under the Influence) vary from state to state and much depends on the circumstances of the individual case.

How far over the limit you were, whether you were speeding or caused an accident and even the type of vehicle you were driving are all factors that are taken into account at your trial – if it comes to a trial, that is. It may be that you are simply fined and have points taken off your driver’s licence.

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The Movement to End Wage Theft

End-Wage-Theft

Over the last decade, grassroots opposition to Wage Theft has grown dramatically across the country. Wage theft, the illegal underpayment of wages primarily affects the working poor. It is widespread and occurs in various forms and industries. It is estimated that millions of low wage workers annually are not paid at legally required overtime rates, at minimum wages or for total hours worked. In response workers’ rights organizations have engaged in increasingly sophisticated and successful campaigns to strengthen enforcement and make sure that monies due employees are repaid.

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