If you have employees at your Fayette company, then you’re likely aware that you must abide by both Kentucky and federal laws. If you don’t, then you could face penalties or get sued. Some companies don’t take their time to learn these laws or purposely turn a blind eye to them. Some laws are more often violated than others.
Minimum wage requirements
The federal minimum wage currently sits at $7.25. It’s been at that same rate for the past 10 years. States that have higher minimum wages than that are required to pay their employees the higher rate instead.
A report published by the National Employment Law Project shows that 19 states all raised their minimum wages starting on Jan. 1. It’s an employer’s responsibility to keep up with the latest rates and to pay it. Many don’t. This often results in them being sued for back pay.
Unpaid annual leave
Another common reason that employers get sued is because they fail to pay vacation leave. Others are sued because they don’t set and adhere to their own policies regarding unused annual leave.
All employers should establish procedures for what happens if a worker still has vacation time accrued when they leave their job. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) doesn’t provide any guidance on this matter so it’s important that you come up with a policy yourself.
Workplace harassment and discrimination
Any harassment or discrimination, whether it occurs during the hiring, employment or firing process is generally illegal provided that the worker belongs to one of many protected classes.
Individuals who are discriminated against based on their gender, nationality, race, age or gender may file suit against their abuser. They can also sue their employer if they knew about it and did nothing to stop it.
The FLSA dictates that employers are required to pay their hourly workers time-and-a-half for any time worked more than 40 full-time hours. If they fail to do this, then they can be sued for back pay.
An employer may also have a workers’ compensation or personal injury lawsuit filed against them if they fail to offer a safe working environment for their staff.
There’s a lot to take into account when you have your own company. An employment law for employers attorney can help ensure that you remain in compliance with all existing Kentucky and federal laws,