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Employment Law: A Series of Five Short Courses

Description:

This series of short five short courses, taught by Michelle Puiggari, J.D., and founder and owner of Puiggari and Associates Consulting, can be approached as a series or as standalone courses.

Course Policies

Courses:

Employee Health Issues: Understanding and Complying with the Myriad of Federal and State Laws Addressing Employee Medical Issues and Leave Requirements

Date: Tuesday
May 7th
Time: 9:00am - 1:00pm
Location: The University of Montana
James E. Todd Building, Rm 203
Hours of Instruction: 4
Course Fee: $120.00

UM Employees, please call ext 6496 for special pricing.
Register Now

Course Description:

This course covers the basics of Federal and Montana State laws that regulate employee health issues. The course will explain the requirements of Federal laws: the ADAA, FMLA, USERRA, and Montana State specific laws; Workers Compensation, Military leave, and Pregnancy Leave Act. The class will cover when the laws are applicable, what each requires of the company and what the company can require of the employee. There will be practice exercises on how to engage in the Interactive Process required by the ADAA. The course will also cover retaliation issues, including what the law requires, what would constitute retaliation and how to prevent it.

Basics of Federal and State Discrimination Law: How to Create a Discrimination Free Workplace

Date: Wednesday
May 8th
Time: 3:00 - 5:00pm
Location: The University of Montana
James E. Todd Building, Rm 203 
Hours of Instruction: 2
Course Fee: $60.00

UM Employees, please call ext 6496 for special pricing.
Register Now

Course Description:

This course covers the basics of Title VII and Montana State law. It will explain what discrimination is, a company’s responsibilities towards its employees, how to draft a policy and why it is necessary, how to handle complaints, why and how to train employees, and retaliation issues.

Discrimination laws will be explained, including a discussion on all protected categories, especially those only applicable to Montana. The class will be required to analyze vignettes to ascertain if the behavior is discriminatory. Participants will learn what constitutes discrimination under the law, how to recognize discriminatory behavior, what the company has to do to be compliant and protect its employees and how to stop discriminatory behaviors. The class will also focus on how to draft and implement a policy and then how to train employees in these issues. Participants will learn what to do to address internal complaints of discrimination and complaints filed with the Human Resources Department. Finally the class will also address what retaliation is, why it is illegal, and why it is so prevalent and what to do to prevent it.

Employee Discipline and Termination in Montana

Date: Tuesday
May 14th
Time: 11:00am - 1:00pm
Location: The University of Montana
James E. Todd Building, Rm 203 
Hours of Instruction: 2
Course Fee: $60.00

UM Employees, please call ext 6496 for special pricing.
Register Now

Course Description:

This course covers the basics of disciplining employees, including when to discipline, how to discipline, why it is necessary and documenting effectively.

The course will also address how to effectively terminate an employee. There is no At-Will employment in Montana. Thus employers must understand what statutes govern terminations. The course will focus on the requirements of the Montana Wrongful Discharge Act, including explaining when an employee can be legally terminated, the process required by the Statute, and the damages if the employee is not terminated lawfully. The course will provide information useful to ensuring that the termination is done correctly, can be justified, is supportable, and is based on employee performance issues, including how to comply with privacy laws and avoid defamation claims. For public employers, the class will address the requirement that the employee be given just cause related to the termination. This concept is also useful to support termination decisions by private employers and to avoid claims of retaliation.

Additionally, other termination issues will be discussed such as grievance procedures, what needs to be included in the final paycheck, when the final paycheck must be issued under Montana law, and what documents must be kept and for how long.

The Basics of Employee Handbooks and Policies

Date: Tuesday
May 21st
Time: 11:00am - 12:00pm
Location: The University of Montana
James E. Todd Building, Rm 203 
Hours of Instruction: 1
Course Fee: $30.00

UM Employees, please call ext 6496 for special pricing.
Register Now

Course Description:

This course will focus on why companies should or should not have an employee manual, and if the company chooses to have a handbook, what should be included, especially since Montana law is unique in this area. The course will provide instruction on how to draft a good policy, how and why to train employees in the policy and the need for the company to follow its policy.

Hiring Effectively and Legally, Wage and Hour Issues

Date: Tuesday
May 21st
Time: 1:00 - 3:00pm
Location: The University of Montana
James E. Todd Building, Rm 203 
Hours of Instruction: 2
Course Fee: $60.00

UM Employees, please call ext 6496 for special pricing.
Register Now

Course Description:

The first part of the class will provide the participant with basic knowledge of employment laws related to how to hire employees without violating discrimination laws, the basics of a good job advertisement and interview techniques, do and don’t ask questions, and the need for good job descriptions. What information should be documented and what records need to be kept and for how long. We will also discuss whether or not to do performance evaluations.

The second part of the class will give the participant the knowledge of basic federal and state wage and hour laws including the FLSA and Montana state law. This will provide knowledge on how to judge if someone is an Independent Contractor or not, the requirement to obtain a copy of the IC certificate, how to decide if an employee is exempt or not, what must be in any policy related to the payment of wages and vacation time, whether a business must offer break time, etc.

Michele Puiggari | Employment Law: A Series of Five Short Courses Instructor | Professional Development Courses | UMExtended | School of Extended & Lifelong Learning

About the Instructor:

Michele Puiggari is the founder and owner of Puiggari and Associates Consulting Services in Missoula, Montana. Ms. Puiggari is an attorney licensed in New Mexico, D.C. and Pennsylvania. After receiving her J.D., she started her own successful employment law practice, where she represented both employees and employers. In addition to litigating employment issues, Ms. Puiggari provided basic HR legal consulting services, employment training for managers and employees, review and revision of employment policies and procedures, and employment investigation services. 

Now in Montana, Ms. Puiggari focuses on providing HR consulting services to businesses. Her areas of expertise, include employment policy development, employment training of managers and employees emphasizing compliance with state and federal employment law, assistance with responding to external agency complaints of discrimination, and resolving workplace discrimination complaints, including employment investigations. Her clients include businesses in retail, healthcare, county government and higher education.

Ms. Puiggari has a B.S. in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University and her JD from Catholic University Columbus School of Law.

  • School of Extended & Lifelong Learning
  • The University of Montana
  • 32 Campus Drive
  • Missoula, MT  59812
  • Phone: (406) 243-2900
  • Fax: (406) 243-2047
  • Email: sell@umontana.edu