Any way you look at it, labor law compliance is critical to your business. Staying in compliance with applicable employment laws not only helps you to build a fair and equitable work environment, but it also helps you avoid the penalties of non-compliance, including fines, lawsuits, and possible reputational damage.
Whether you have fifty employees or 500, labor law compliance is essential to your success in workforce management. But once you understand the laws and have the right processes in place, you can navigate the many federal and state labor laws and maintain compliance consistently.
Key Labor Laws Affecting Your Business
In a 2021 Littler employer survey, 83 percent of business executives said they were concerned about labor law compliance requirements. One of the reasons employment law compliance can be so challenging is because there are so many laws. In fact, the Department of Labor (DOL) administers and enforces over 180 federal statutes. There are also dozens of state laws you must follow, depending on your location.
While not a comprehensive list, here are just a few of the most important labor laws affecting your workforce today:
- Fair Labor Standards Act: As the central wage and hour law in the U.S., the FLSA governs working hours, the federal minimum wage, and overtime requirements for employees who work over 40 hours per week. You must also follow FLSA guidelines when making a determination about any employee exemptions from the overtime requirement.
- Family and Medical Leave Act: The FMLA requires employers to provide 12 weeks of unpaid time off to eligible employees who need to care for an ill family member or their own medical condition. The FMLA also carries a requirement to provide job protection and healthcare coverage to employees who are out on eligible leaves.
- Benefits laws: There are several laws protecting employee access to benefits in the workplace. For example, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) sets requirements for healthcare premium costs and employee eligibility for benefits. And anytime employees leave your organization, you must follow benefits continuation requirements under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA).
- Discrimination laws: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) enforces several laws designed to protect employees from unfair discrimination in the workplace, including the Civil Rights Act, Equal Pay Act, and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Notably, the ADA has grown in importance during the COVID-19 pandemic because it provides specific guidance to employers regarding COVID-19 and vaccination in the workplace.
- State employment laws: Unfortunately, federal employment laws aren’t the only labor laws to keep on your radar. You also need to comply with state-specific laws such as “mini-COBRA” laws, state paid leave requirements, and salary history bans limiting the questions you can ask job candidates about compensation.
Is Your Organization in Compliance?
Given the amendments and other changes occurring regularly in federal and state labor laws, it’s critical to routinely monitor your workplace policies and practices for compliance. And, since some laws can vary from state to state, it’s easier than you think to be in compliance in one location and out of compliance in another.
If your organization has experienced any of the following scenarios, you may not be as compliant with federal and state labor laws as you desire:
- You don’t have a consistent process for classifying employees as FLSA exempt or non-exempt from overtime requirements
- You don’t have a process for tracking mandated employee leaves
- You don’t have a policy for retaining or filing employee records such as I-9s and tax information
- You have been late in filing payroll and benefits-related forms with the IRS
- An internal audit has identified potential compliance risks in your talent management practices
How an HR Services Provider Can Help Boost Your Labor Law Compliance
Managing your workforce is complex enough without having to keep track of dozens of employment laws impacting the way you hire, pay, and terminate employees. An HR services provider like MarvelHR can help you avoid compliance nightmares and create policies and practices to keep you in compliance. Here are just a few services and areas of support you can expect from your trusted HR services partner:
- Policy manual creation and updates
- Processes for employee recordkeeping in compliance with FLSA requirements
- Paid and unpaid leave tracking and documentation
- Preparation of tax and benefits IRS filings
- Regular updates about changes in laws affecting your workforce
Instead of being a headache, labor law compliance can be a breeze. With MarvelHR as your all-in-one HR services partner, you can take advantage of best practices in labor law compliance and protect your organization from non-compliance penalties. To learn more, contact us today.