A brief introduction to labor law posters
Labor law posters are detailed, instructive, informative posters, which are required to provide employees with information about legislation relating to employee rights, options and responsibilities. There are currently over 2,000 labor law posters in use across the US and Canada. If you’re setting up a business, or you run a company, it’s critical to understand the regulations and rules related to displaying labor law posters. Labor law posters cover a broad spectrum of issues from wages and leave entitlement to employee benefits and discrimination.
Quick facts about labor law posters
There are state and federal regulations in place that govern the provision of labor law posters. These frequently asked questions and quick facts will provide you with all the information you need to ensure your business or organization is fully compliant.
Who should display labor law posters?
If you are an employer, you will need to display labor law posters. From small offices with teams of less than 10 employees to high-profile companies with thousands of workers, labor law posters are a requirement for the vast majority of businesses. There are variations between different states, so check the requirements in your state. Employers can check that they are compliant with federal rules at https://webapps.dol.gov/elaws/posters.htm. To check state regulations, visit https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/state/contacts. There may be exemptions from some mandated federal labor law posters, for example, some small, private companies that have fewer than 50 employees may not need to display the Family Medical Leave Act poster.
Why is it important to stay up to date with labor law poster legislation?
There are two key reasons to stay up to date with guidelines related to labor law posters. These include:
- Ensuring compliance and reducing the risk of employee complaints and federal and state penalties, including fines. Employers who do not display OSHA federal posters can be fined up to $7,000. Fines for failure to display mandated labor law posters range from $110 to $17,000.
- Improving communications with employees and boosting wellbeing and morale: employees want to feel valued and respected and they should have access to clear information. Posters are a simple but effective means of communicating and solidifying the relationship between employers and employees.
- Between 2014 and 2017, there were 46 federal and 887 state updates.
- Colorado made the most changes, with 12 updates in 2016
- California made the most city changes, with 90 updates in 2016
- 88% of states introduced updates in 2016
- There were 459 city updates in 2016
Labor law poster requirements: Ensuring compliance
It is crucial for employers to ensure that they are compliant to avoid penalties and provide employees with the information they need to understand labor laws. Every employer should be aware of the federal and state regulations that relate to their company or organization. There are mandated federal posters, which should be displayed by all qualifying employers. Subjects covered by these posters include the Family Medical Leave Act, health and safety and the minimum wage. There are no specific size requirements for labor law posters, but in some cases, they will need to be displayed in different languages. In some states, for example, California and Texas, employers with more than 5% of employees who do not have English as their first language must display labor law posters in Spanish. Posters must be displayed in a physical location, which is easily accessible for employees. Electronic versions are available, but they do not meet the requirements related to displaying posters set out by federal and state authorities. These copies should be for consultation only. All employees, including those who work remotely or from home, should be made aware of labor law posters. Employers can either send electronic copies to homeworkers or post an electronic copy in the mail.
Labor law posters are designed to provide essential information about employment laws and rights. There are federal and state regulations in place to ensure that employers display labor law posters and that employees understand their rights and responsibilities. If you run a business, or you employ staff members, you will need to ensure that you comply with both federal and state guidelines to avoid fines and penalties. Mandated posters should be displayed clearly in locations that are accessible to all employees.