One of the most challenging parts of running a business with employees is keeping on top of federal, state and local employment laws. Depending on where your business is located, you may have numerous local and state laws on top of the federal laws. Not complying with them can lead to legal issues, including employee lawsuits, back pay, and government agency fines.
Some of the major compliance issues you may face:
- Wage and Hour Laws – this includes establishing minimum wage, overtime pay, and record keeping. A major source of employment lawsuits are mis-classifying employees and owing back wages.
- Independent Contractors – in a “freelancer” economy, who is an employee can be murky. But the consequences of misclassifying an employee as a freelancer can be large, and result in the employer paying back taxes due as well as fines.
- Discrimination and Harassment – discrimination on the basis of any protected characteristic is illegal in the workplace. Sexual harassment is a form of discrimination. Your business needs to have a written harassment policy as well a procedure for investigating complaints. This is possibly the fastest growing area of employee lawsuits.
- Paid Leave – paid leave is typically at the discretion of the company; however, in recent years many states and cities have instituted “mandatory” paid sick and personal leave laws. If you are in one of these states/cities, you must be careful to comply.
- Unpaid Leave – the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) offers unpaid leave to eligible employees. FMLA is difficult to apply and track, and the correct policy should be in place, if your business is obligated to provide this leave.
Aspire HR Compliance Audit Service
Aspire HR has developed a Compliance Audit checklist covering over 90 different areas of legal compliance. In addition, our Audit considers best practices in areas such as recruiting, onboarding, training, and performance evaluation. All Audits come with a complete analysis and easy to understand recommendations to protect your business from lawsuits and to “level up” your HR and management practices.