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Engaged employees might want to double check their financial plans

A recent survey conducted by TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation’s indicates that having a fiancé with a poor financial situation doesn’t affect marriage plans much. The “Couples & Money” survey asked respondents about how a list of financial issues impacting a future spouse would result in a delay or cancellation of a wedding. Things like: Low credit score Little or no savings High credit card debt High student loan debt Mortgage issue or foreclosure Lack of employment No retirement savings Having filed bankruptcy In first place, 32 percent of respondents felt a bankruptcy was cause to call off a wedding, while 27 percent felt it would cause them to postpone the wedding. “One of the most common challenges newlyweds face is how to merge their finances,” said Carrie Braxdale, managing director, investor services, TD Ameritrade. “We know that more people are getting married later in life, and as a result, they a ...

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Consider adding “brain” support to your benefits package

Some recent benefit package trends revolve around addressing the emotional and cognitive aspects of employees. Traditionally, wellness programs have focused on an employee’s physical body, like improving heart and lung health. Yet a growing number of offerings are including tools to keep employees’ brains active and alert. Earlier this year, Aetna Health launched MyBrainSolutions. This program includes online games and evaluations that employees can utilize. The tools focus on four mental areas: emotion, thinking, feeling and self-regulation. "We're intrigued with the notion of looking at the brain as any other muscle or organ in the body," says Louise Murphy, head of Hartford, Connecticut-based Aetna Behavioral Health. "The idea is to exercise the brain and improve it by using compelling games and tasks, and it aligns with our goal of helping members enhance their well-being and become the best they can from a health perspective." These online solutions are akin to those app for iPhones and t ...

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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is Compensable through Workers’ Comp

According to court documents, the Tennessee Supreme Court says Steven Ratliff should be able to utilize Workers’ Compensation coverage to address his Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from seeing the bodies of two workers killed on the job. In February 2008, Ratliff was working as a melt shop attendant for Joliet, Il-based Gerdau Ameristeel Inc. Ratliff witnessed a co-worker’s body after the worker fell from a platform. Later that year, he saw another co-worker’s body after another falling accident in the workplace. Following these incidents, Ratliff refused grief counseling offered by the employer, even though he was “distraught”. IN June of 2008, Ratliff was diagnosed with PTSD in large part due to his anxiety and crying incidents on many occasions. He filed for workers’ compensation benefits in June 2009. In a court debate, a Tennessee chancery court ruled the statute of limitations had run out on the incident due to Ratliff not filing a timely claim related to t ...

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Recent research gives insight to the use of video in the workplace

Over 80% or corporate communicators say it’s difficult to communicate with coworkers when they are out of the office, according to a Ragan Communications and Qumu report, “Maximizing Remote Employee Collaboration with Video.” 77.1% believe the adoption of mobile technology would increase efficiency in working with the off-site employees. The survey focused on the use of video to help with those employees who are on the go. Video was the preferred communication over the following scenarios: Company-wide meetings/Department Meetings (62.4% preferred video) Technical documents describing complicated products (60.4% preferred video) In place of traveling to a seminar (54.5% preferred video) Yet, video fell short in the following scenarios: Only 22.8% of respondents preferred video over conference calls taken from home.  And only 40.6% preferred video over conference calls with potential clients. Live video was most valued when being used for collaborating ...

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Florida court upholds five-year limit on workers’ compensation benefits for older workers.

A recent court case confirmed the legality of Florida’s limit on how long an older employee is entitles to workers’ compensation benefits. The law in question specifically applies to workers over the age of 70 who are injured on the job. The case of Millie Berman vs. Dillard’s and ESIS consists of a 2004 workplace accident the resulted in Ms. Berman receiving permanent total disability benefits at age 74. She was 72 at the time of the accident. In 2011, Ms. Berman was told her benefits were being suspended due to being at the end of her five years of eligibility according to Florida law. Ms. Berman contended the change by claiming it was age discrimination and violated her right of access to courts. She claimed her case should be subject to a “strict scrutiny standard of review.” This view of the law is the strictest level and usually focuses on situations involving violations of constitutionally guarantees rights related to the 14th amendment, like the right to vote and the r ...

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