Employment rights attorney Carney Shegerian, founder of California-based Shegerian & Associates, has issued a statement regarding the recent remarks from President Barack Obama concerning the employment rights of part-time Staples workers.

As reported on Reuters, President Barack Obama was outraged upon hearing that Staples, in an effort to avoid the costs of the ACA, threatened to fire part-time workers who chose to work more than 25 hours. Staples has maintained that the policy has been in place for more than 10 years, and thus was not meant to avoid ACA requirements

“Every worker now has a right to health insurance under the Affordable Care Act if they meet the work hour requirements noted in the law,” said Shegerian. “When an employer tries to circumvent this by threatening workers whose work hours approach the 30-hour mark triggering the ACA, that employer might need the strong reproach of our nation’s President.”

“The truth is some employers simply don’t want to pay the costs necessary to ensure their workers have quality insurance under the ACA,” Shegerian went on to say. “However, the law still applies to employers who would rather shirk their responsibilities under federal law than comply. Ultimately, employment rights laws are meant to protect workers from such behavior. Regardless of the number of years the policy has been in place at Staples, no worker should be forced to cut back on hours in order for their employer to avoid the costs of compliance with federal law.”

Shegerian also referenced a recent case the firm won against Staples, Nickel v. Staples, in which a jury awarded Nickel an over $26 million verdict against Staples for age discrimination. Shegerian went on to say that, “Corporations small and large have a responsibility to act within employment laws and ensure all their employees’ rights are protected at all times.”


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