It is a sad truth that the American Dream has become harder and harder to achieve.
Americans are working longer hours for lower wages than they did 40 years ago, while at the same time, prices have doubled. The cost of living has outpaced wage growth so much that many Americans now work two or three jobs to stay afloat financially. Even more disturbing, the lifetime earnings of an average worker in America today can’t support a middle-class lifestyle over their retirement years compared with workers from previous generations who were paid less overall but had higher pay rates about inflation.
To address these complex realities and ensure fair treatment for all employees, employers need to provide competitive salaries and benefits packages to attract and retain the best talent in today’s tight job market. However, there are times when employers may need to go beyond what is required by law and offer extra financial assistance to employees who are struggling with difficult personal situations.
However, it is essential to identify those situations to establish rules on who gets financial assistance. Here are some of those events that could warrant the move.
Mountains of Medical Bills
Medical bills can become a significant financial struggle for employees, even if they are not the ones hospitalized. Medical bills are the leading cause of bankruptcy in America.
Financial assistance from employers can help employees with mounting medical bills. This type of assistance can take a few different forms, such as providing employees with a stipend to help pay their medical expenses, waiving co-pays and deductibles, or reimbursing employees for out-of-pocket medical costs.
Employers should also consider offering employees access to health insurance plans with low or no premiums. It will help employees avoid incurring large medical debts if they need to seek treatment. However, it should already be a given from the start.
Employers should also be aware that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires them to provide coverage for their employees’ dependents, even if they do not employ those dependents.
Death of a Spouse or Child
The death of a spouse or child can be one of the most challenging things an employee has to go through. Not only is the emotional toll devastating, but the financial implications can be crippling as well.
Employers can provide employees with extra assistance in these difficult times by offering paid bereavement leave, paying for funeral expenses, and helping employees cover other associated costs such as medical bills and debts.
Paid bereavement leave is not part of the law, but many companies offer it to show their support for employees during a difficult times.
Funeral expenses can be expensive, and many families struggle to pay for them. Employers can help by paying for the funeral or reimbursing employees for their funeral costs.
Many employers also offer assistance with other associated costs, such as medical bills and debts. This type of support can be invaluable to employees grieving and trying to cope with their loss.
When a natural disaster such as a hurricane or tornado strikes, it can cause significant damage to homes and businesses. Employees can be left struggling to rebuild their lives while also trying to work and provide for their families.
Employers can provide relief to their employees in times of crisis by paying employees who cannot work because of the natural disaster, providing them with short-term housing, or reimbursing them for their lost wages.
Employers should also consider allowing employees to donate vacation days to co-workers who have been affected by the natural disaster.
Many employers offer assistance in the form of short-term housing when a natural disaster strikes. It can be a massive help to employees who have lost their homes and need a place to stay.
Employers can also pay employees who cannot work because of a natural disaster. It can help employees financially while they are trying to rebuild their lives. Reimbursing employees for their lost wages can also provide much-needed financial relief.
Many people do not realize that medical surgeries can be a significant burst of unexpected financial expenses. While the surgery may be necessary, the associated costs can be difficult for employees to cover.
Employers can help employees cover the cost of medical surgeries by reimbursing them for their out-of-pocket costs, providing them with a stipend to help pay for the surgery, or waiving co-pays and deductibles.
Medical surgeries can be a significant financial burden, but employers can help their employees cover the costs. However, it is dental issues that could bankrupt employees more. Dental problems are significantly painful for employees, and they might require surgery immediately. One way to do it is to partner with dental establishments, providing discounts for employees should they have problems with their oral health. Getting All-on-4 dental implants can be costly, but your employee might need them immediately without financial preparations. Since it is not part of the HMO coverage, the least you could do is assist them financially.
Offering financial assistance to employees in a crisis can be an investment for employer loyalty. When you show your support and care for your employee, it means something to them as individuals and their family members. This type of investment could go a long way towards ensuring that they remain loyal to your company or organization even after going through such difficult times.