CDA's Sample Employee Manual updated with new and revised policies

California employers have their work cut out for them navigating the myriad changing employment laws that are effective each year. Having a well-drafted, up-to-date, legally compliant manual can play a critical role in helping employers follow new employment laws and manage employees in the practice.

An effective employee manual sets the tone for a practice. It should explain in clear and concise language the most important workplace rules, provide an outline of benefits to which employees may be entitled and provide written notice to employees of applicable state, federal and local laws and their requirements.

CDA Practice Support is pleased to share that the Sample Employee Manual, a downloadable resource for members, has seen a transformation in 2018. Aside from a reorganization of the contents and an update to include gender-neutral language throughout, the newly revised Sample Employee Manual contains the following changes:

New policies

  • Alcohol and drug rehabilitation
  • California Continuation Benefits Replacement Act
  • Continuing education and training rate
  • Employee Literacy Education Assistance Act
  • Immigrant Worker Protection Act
  • New Parent Leave Act
  • Off-duty conduct
  • On-call schedule
  • Operating a vehicle for company business
  • Video surveillance

Revised policies

  • Attendance
  • Corrective action process
  • Discrimination, harassment and retaliation prevention
  • Employer property
  • Kin care
  • Leaves of absence — revised language and new policies
  • Meal and rest breaks 
  • Monitoring of practice property
  • Performance evaluation and merit-based increase
  • Smoke-, marijuana- and tobacco-free workplace — revised to include marijuana and vaping
  • Timekeeping

The law does not require that an employer provide a manual. However, by having all of this information in one place, a good employee manual can serve as an employer‘s guide to help navigate actions when confronted by the various issues and problems that arise in the practice.

CDA Practice Support’s Sample Employee Manual is fully customizable, giving dentists the opportunity to print it and enter data related specifically to their practice. After the manual has been customized and printed, it is recommended that dentists review the printed copy thoroughly for any errors that need attention.

Although attorneys have reviewed the content of the manual to ensure compliance, due to the ever-changing nature of employment law, dentists are advised to have their own attorneys who specialize in the employment laws and regulations of their city, county and state review it before distributing it to their employees. Once the manual is approved, as a best practice employers should review their employment practices and policies annually with an attorney to ensure they are in compliance with the law.

While an employee manual is designed to protect dentists from potential problems in the workplace, it does not guarantee prevention of future lawsuits that may arise out of employment practices.

Access the revised Sample Employee Manual in the Practice Support section of CDA’s website or locate it by title at cda.org/resources.

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