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Employ People without GettingSued or Scr... > Why have an Employee Handbook? - Pg. 90

Staffing Up 9. Get insurance. See "Rainy Days and Harassment Suits Always Get Me Down" sidebar. Note 90 CAUTION More dangerous is the employer's responsibility for an employee's misappropriation of an- other's intellectual property. Example: your musicdirector samples an obscure chunk of music for the soundtrack, without clearing the sample or informing the company.The com- pany isnonetheless subject to suit by the original composer. Figure 4.1. The employer may be liable for infringing activities of its employees whether or not it knew of the infringement. Why have an Employee Handbook? · It provides legal protection for the employer in a discrimination litigation by showing that efforts were made to educate the employees and provide channels for airing complaints. · Providing a FAQ eases HR administration. · Rules are more likely to be followed if publicly stated and standardized. Note CAUTION An employee handbook can beused against a company if it is notcarefully drafted. Two main dangers: 1. That it will be construed ascreating a contract between theemployee and the company; and2. That an employer will be heldliable for not following the policies(e.g. termination) to the letter. Note TIP Include two disclaimers at the beginningand end of the book that sound somethinglike this: "Employer reserves the right to alter,delete, add to, or revise any and all policiescontained herein without notice. This handbook is not a contract of employment anddoes not create any obligation whatsoeverbetween Company and worker." What to Include in an Employee Handbook This is a partial list. Employee handbooks need to be reviewed by your attorney and customized for every workplace and office. It may even make sense to have a different handbook for executives than you do for other employees.