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Are Your Labor Law Posters Current and Pandemic-Compliant?

 

All employers are required to display certain labor law posters in a conspicuous area of their worksite where employees, and in some cases job applicants, can see them, such as in the breakroom or near the time clock. Before determining whether it's time to update your posters, you need to know which types of posters are relevant to your business.  

Federal labor law posters

There are six major federal labor law posters:

  • Occupational Safety and Health Act.
  • Fair Labor Standards Act.
  • Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act.
  • Equal Employment Opportunity.
  • Family and Medical Leave Act.
  • Employee Polygraph Protection Act.

For example, if your business is subject to the FLSA, OSHA and FMLA, you must display those posters. 

Other federal posters — aside from the six shown above — may apply, depending on your business. To determine your federal poster requirements, use the U.S. Department of Labor's FirstStep Poster Advisor online tool. 

What about Pandemic rules?

Each covered employer must post a notice of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requirements in a conspicuous place on its premises. Are all or most employees telecommuting? An employer may satisfy the "conspicuous place" requirement by emailing or direct mailing this notice to employees, or posting this notice on an employee information internal or external website.

Indeed, although most poster regulations were written before remote working became common, the SHRM notes that "making labor law postings available on your company’s intranet is a practical way to share the information about employee rights that the posters contain."

How often should you change your federal posters?

Whenever the respective federal laws require changes to the posters. Although federal labor law posters typically aren't updated often, changes do occur. For example, the FLSA Minimum Wage poster and the EPPA poster were last updated in July 2016. Covered employers had to display the revised versions as of Aug. 1, 2016.

To see when a federal labor law poster was last revised, visit the DOL's Workplace Posters webpage.

State and local labor law posters

These vary by state and locality. Often, state posters cover:

  • Minimum wage.
  • Child labor.
  • Unemployment insurance.
  • Workers' compensation.
  • Paid sick time/family leave.
  • Discrimination.

Some states require other posters, such as health and safety, daily overtime, disability insurance, whistleblower protection, transgender rights, breastfeeding, sexual harassment, human trafficking, no smoking and time off to vote.

To know which state and local posters you must display, contact your state labor department.

How often should you change your state and local posters? Whenever the respective state and local laws require changes to the posters. Note that state and local minimum wage posters tend to change more frequently than other labor law posters. For example, many city minimum wages are subject to annual adjustment based on the Consumer Price Index. Employers in those cities must change their minimum wage posters to reflect the adjusted minimum wages. 

Further considerations

Poster changes can occur at any time of the year, not just at the beginning, as the timing is driven entirely by the governing law. These changes may not always relate to preprinted information, so keep an eye out for other types of updates, such as poster size requirements and posters that require employers to fill in company-specific information. 

Also, some poster changes may be "cosmetic" rather than mandatory. In these cases, employers are not required to replace their old posters. Both the old and new versions are acceptable. 

Failure to comply with federal, state and local poster laws can result in strict penalties, from $500 to $10,000 per violation, according to the Society for Human Resource Management. To avoid penalties, employers should install a reliable system for monitoring poster changes.

 

 
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Scott Johnson
TimePays
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scott@timepays.com
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Our firm provides the information in this e-newsletter for general guidance only, and does not constitute the provision of legal advice, tax advice, accounting services, investment advice, or professional consulting of any kind. The information provided herein should not be used as a substitute for consultation with professional tax, accounting, legal, or other competent advisers. Before making any decision or taking any action, you should consult a professional adviser who has been provided with all pertinent facts relevant to your particular situation. The information is provided "as is," with no assurance or guarantee of completeness, accuracy, or timeliness of the information, and without warranty of any kind, express or implied, including but not limited to warranties of performance, merchantability, and fitness for a particular purpose.
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