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State Employment

Laws 2020

Below you will find a compilation of employment

laws every HR professional should know.

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State Employment Laws

Accommodation   Passed — April 8, 2020  Effective — March 28, 2020
California

Expanded lactation accommodation requirements [AB 1976]

Arbitration   Passed — March 14, 2020  Effective — March 28, 2020
California

If an employer fails to pay the required fees and costs associated with arbitration, the employer is in material breach of the arbitration agreement and waives their right to arbitrate. [SB 707]

Criminal History   Passed — March 14, 2020  Effective — March 28, 2020
California

Restricts employers on inquiring about an applicant’s prior arrest and detention records and are limited to asking only about a relevant “particular conviction” for “conviction for specific criminal conduct or a category of criminal offenses prescribed by any federal law.” [SB 1412]

Discrimination Claims   Passed — January 1, 2019  Effective — March 28, 2020
California

Settlement agreements cannot prevent disclosure of factual information related to sexual harassment or discrimination claims [SB 820]; expanded the scope of “privileged communications” to protect employees making sexual harassment allegations and to protect former employees when raising credible allegations. [AB 2770]

Discrimination Claim Filing   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — March 28, 2020
California

Gives employees a two-year extension (up to three years) to file Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) claims. Employees will continue to have one year to file a lawsuit once receiving the notice of right-to-sue. [AB 9]

Discrimination Against Service Members January 1, 2019
California

Prohibits employers from discharging or stopping benefits of an employee for being a member of the military reserve or because of an ordered military duty or training. [SB 1500]

Lactation Accommodation January 1, 2019
California

Requires employers to provide a location other than a bathroom to express milk. [AB 1976][AB 142]

Family Leave   Passed — June 27, 2019  Effective — January 1, 2019
California

Increases the length of paid family leave to eight weeks. [SB 83]

Hair Styles July 3, 2019
California

Expands the FEHA definition of “race” to include traits historically associated with race, including hair texture and hairstyles. Employers are prohibited from instituting workplace dress codes and/or grooming policies that prevent employees from wearing their hair in a natural manner. [SB 188]

Harassment January 1, 2019
California

Expands liability to cover all forms of harassment, rather than only sexual harassment. Prohibits, as a condition of employment, the employee to sign a nondisparagement agreement that purports to deny the employee’s right to disclose information about unlawful acts in the workplace. [SB 1300]

Harassment Training January 1, 2019
California

Extends harassment training requirements to smaller employers and nonsupervisory employees. Requires training by 1/1/20. [SB 1343] Blog

Human Trafficking January 1, 2019
California

Requires hotels and motels to provide at least 20 minutes of human trafficking awareness training. Training must be conducted by 1/1/20 for certain employees and every two years thereafter. [SB 970] Certain businesses must post a compliant notice regarding human trafficking. [AB 2034]

Independent Contractor Status   Passed — September 11, 2019  Effective — July 1, 2020
California

Codifies the “ABC” test for determining contractor status. The conditions have been identified to determine if a worker meets the independent contractor status. [AB 5]

Mandatory Arbitration January 1, 2020
California

Employers can no longer require, as a condition of employment or continued employment, that an applicant or employee, waive any right, forum or procedure for alleged violation of the CA FEHA. Employees can voluntarily choose to enter into an arbitration agreement. [AB 51] Federal judge temporarily blocked implementation of AB 51 on 1/2/2020.

Military Leave January 1, 2019
California

Amends the Family Temporary Disability Insurance Program to include time off for a servicemember to participate in a qualifying exigency related to a covered active duty. [SB 1123]

Non-Disclosure Agreements January 1, 2019
California

Prohibits confidentiality provisions in settlement agreements that would prevent disclosure of information related to claims of sexual assault, harassment, and discrimination. [SB 820]

Red Flag Law   Passed — October 19, 2019  Effective — September 1, 2020
California

Broadens the classes of individuals who may apply for a gun violence restraining order (GVRO) to include employers, and (under certain circumstances) coworkers and teachers. Coworkers must have had regular interactions with the person for at least one year and obtained approval from their employer. [AB 61]

Salary History January 1, 2020
California

Clarifies employers’ use and consideration of salary history [AB 2282]

Settlement Agreements   Passed — September 5, 2020  Effective — January 1, 2020
California

Prohibits and invalidates provisions within settlement agreement which prohibit, prevent, or otherwise restrict a settling employee from working for the employer or any parent company, subsidiary, division, affiliate, or contractor of the employer. [AB 749]

Gun Violence Restraining Order   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — September 1, 2020
California

An employer, co-worker, or school employee may file a court petition requesting a gun violence straining order against an employee who poses a significant danger of causing personal injury to others by having in their custody or control, owning, purchasing, possessing or receiving a firearm. [Gun Violence Restraining Orders]

Criminal History September 1, 2021
Colorado

Affects all private employers with 11 or more employees. No criminal history questions on initial job applications [HB 1025]

Salary History   Passed — May 22, 2019  Effective — January 1, 2021
Colorado

Applies to all employers who must disclose in each posting for each job opening the hourly or salary compensation, or a range of the hourly pay or salary. Must also include a general description of all the benefits and other compensation to be offered. [Equal Pay for Equal Work Act]

Wage   Passed — January 22, 2020  Effective — March 16, 2020
Colorado

Expands coverage to all private employers, unless exempt per rules 2.2-2.4. Increases protections for hourly employees, including rest period requirements and expansion of “time worked” criteria. Imposes a salary basis requirement for salaried workers to qualify as exempt. New posting, acknowledgement and translation requirements. [Colorado Overtime and Minimum Pay Standards Order 36]

Updates to Anti-discrimination January 1, 2019
Colorado - Denver

Prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity, gender expression, ethnicity, citizenship, and immigration status; requires an employer to provide reasonable accommodations to an existing or prospective employee for pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions.  [Anti-Discrimination Ordinance]

Hair Discrimination   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — September 14, 2020
Colorado

Provides that race discrimination includes hair texture, hair type, and protective hairstyles such as braids, locs, twists, tight coils or curls, cornrows, bantu knots, Afros and headwraps that are commonly associated with race. [Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act]

Wage or Salary Histories January 1, 2019
Connecticut

Employers are prohibited from inquiring about prospective employees’ wage or salary histories, unless the applicant voluntarily discloses the information [HB 5386]

Sexual Harassment   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Connecticut

All employers must provide two hours of sexual harassment prevention training to supervisors. Employers with three or more employees must provide the required training to all employees. Training must be conducted by 10/1/2020 and supplemental training must be provided at least every 10 years. Newly hired employees and supervisors must be trained within their first six months of employment.

Employers with three or more employees must provide employees "a copy of the information concerning the illegality of sexual harassment" or provide a link to the Commissions website. [Time’s Up Act, CT Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities interactive online training]

Sexual Harassment January 1, 2019
Delaware

Requires employers with 50+ employees to provide sexual harassment training to new employees within one year of hire, to existing employees within one years of the effective date of the act, and thereafter every two years. [HB 360]

WARN January 1, 2019
Delaware

Requires employers with 50+ employees to provide 60 days’ notice to employees impacted by mass layoffs, plant closings, or relocations causing employment loss. [HB 409]

Domestic & Sexual Violence February 18, 2019
District of Columbia

Prohibits discrimination against employees on the basis that they or their family members are victims of domestic violence, sexual offenses, or stalking. Employers must make reasonable accommodations to ensure the employee’s (or family member’s) security and safety. [District of Columbia’s Human Rights Act]

Voting Leave June 23, 2020
District of Columbia

Requires employers to provide at least two hours of paid leave for employees to vote in person.  [Leave to Vote Amendment Act]

Paid Family Leave   Passed — July 1, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
District of Columbia

An employee may receive up to eight workweeks of benefits in a 52 workweek period for: (1) family leave to care for a family member with a serious health condition, (2) medical leave for the employee's own serious health condition, and (3) parental leave for the birth, placement for adoption or foster care of a child. [DC Paid Leave]

Benefits April 27, 2020
District of Columbia

Requires certain employers to reduce the number of employees who commute into the city by private vehicle through the following measures: (1) providing mass transportation for employees directly, (2) giving employees a transit pass, (3) reimbursing employees for the purchase, maintenance and storage of a bicycle, or (4) employers can pay a $100 fee per employee per month or develop a transportation demand management plan. Covered employers include those who offer a “parking benefit” in D.C. to an employee.   [D.C. Act 23-305 - Transportation Benefits  Equity Amendment Act of 2020]

Wage Theft   Passed — February 7, 2020  Effective — February 7, 2020
Florida (Pinellas County)

Employers must provide written notice to employees at the time of hire and to all employees containing: (1) rate or rates of pay and whether paid by the hour, shift, day, week, etc., (2) allowances claimed as part of the minimum wage, (3) the regular payday, (4) the name of the employer, (5) the address of the employer's main office, and (6) the employer's telephone number. [Wage Theft Ordinance]

Hate Crimes   Passed — June 26, 2020  Effective — June 26, 2020
Georgia

Provides stronger penalties for individuals who target victims because of their actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender, mental disability, or physical disability. Local law enforcement agencies are required to collect data on hate crime investigations and provide "Bias Crime Reports" to the GA Bureau of Investigation. [HB 426 GA Enhanced Penalties for Hate Crimes Act]

Salary History January 1, 2019
Hawaii

Prohibits employers from inquiring about an applicant’s salary history or relying on that information when determining starting compensation. [SB 2351]

Board Make-Up February 7, 2020
Hawaii

Beginning no later than 12/31/2020, each publicly held domestic or foreign corporation whose principal executive office is located within the State shall have a minimum of one female director on its board.  By 12/31/2022, if the number of directors is six or more, the corporation shall have at least three female directors; directors of five or more, the corporation shall have at least two female directors and where the number of directors is four or fewer, the corporation must have at least one female director.  [HB 2720]

Medical Testing January 1, 2020
Illinois

Employers can enforce “reasonable zero tolerance or drug free workplace policies concerning drug testing, smoking, consumption, storage, or use of cannabis in the workplace or while on call provided that the policy is applied in a nondiscriminatory manner [Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act]

Human Trafficking Training   Passed — June 1, 2020  Effective — June 1, 2020
Illinois

Hotels, motels, and casinos must provide certain employees with training on the recognition of human trafficking and protocols for reporting to the appropriate authorities. The Department of Human Services' training program is expected to be released on 7/1/2020. [Lodging Services Human Trafficking Recognition]

Board Make-Up August 27, 2019
Illinois

By 12/31/2020 publicly held domestic or foreign corporations hose principal executive offices are located in the State shall have a minimum of one female director and one African American director on its board of directors.   [HB3394]

Pre-Employment Testing December 4, 2019
Illinois

Clarifies the employer’s ability to conduct pre-employment and random drug tests and take action due to a failure of a drug test. Employers may also conduct reasonable-suspicion and post-accident tests. (SB 1557)

School Activities Leave   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — August 1, 2020
Illinois

The Illinois’ School Visitation Right Acts (SVRA) is amended to cover behavioral meetings or academic meetings and prohibits employers from terminating an employee because of an absence that is due solely to a reason protected by the SVRA.

Service Member Reemployment June 1, 2019
Illinois

Prohibits employers from imposing conditions for military leave. Requires service members to give notice of pending service to employers. [SB 3547]

Sexual Harassment January 31, 2020
Illinois

Employers must provide sexual harassment prevention training to all employees, including short-term, part-time, and interns by 12/31/2020 and annually thereafter. [Public Act 101-0221, Illinois Department of Human Rights Guidance]

Harassment   Passed — August 9, 2019  Effective — January 1, 2020
Illinois

Requires employers who had an adverse judgment or administrative ruling concerning harassment or sexual harassment in the previous year to annually report data to the IDHR, including the number of adverse decisions [effective 7/1/2020]. Employers must conduct annual sexual harassment training.

Prohibits employers from contractually restricting a prospective, current or former employee’s ability to report allegations of unlawful conduct, including discrimination, harassment, and retaliation, for investigation by authorities. Bars unilaterally requiring that a current or prospective employee waive, arbitrate, “or otherwise diminish” existing or future claims, rights, or benefits related to unlawful discrimination, harassment, or retaliation. [Workplace Transparency Act [Workplace Transparency Act – Public Act 101-0221 Reporting Guidance

Video Interviewing January 1, 2020
Illinois

Regulates the use of artificial intelligence to analyze and evaluate job applicants’ video interviews. Imposes duties of transparency, consent and data destruction [Artificial Intelligence Video Interview Act]

Pay Stubs and Scheduling   Passed — May 12, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Illinois - Chicago

Requires employers: (1) to provide the locations where new employees will work and the estimated work schedule, (2) to maintain the confidentiality of employees who have identified themselves as victims of domestic violence or sexual violence and have requested to have their work schedules not to be shared with other employees, (3) to provide notice of an employee’s rights under the Ordinance, (4) to obtain the employee’s written consent during each work schedule change, and (5) to maintain electronic records demonstrating compliance.    [Fair Workweek Ordinance]

Private lawsuits under the Ordinance may not be initiated until 1/1/2021.

 

Non-Competes   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Indiana

Requires enforceable physician non-compete agreements to contain five provisions that the employer is required to provide the physician at the termination of their employment or at the end of the contract. [To be codified in part as Ind. Code § 25-22.5-5.5] 

Microchip Implantation July 1, 2020
Indiana

Employers are prohibited from requiring current and prospective employees to undergo microchip implantation as a condition of employment or receiving additional compensation or benefits. An employer may require employees to comply with a court order directing them to receive the implantation.

Ban the Box July 1, 2020
Iowa

Employers, with at least 15 employees, will no longer be allowed to have a criminal history box on applications or inquire about criminal history before making a conditional offer of employment.  Employers may only rescind a conditional offer of employment based on a criminal record if it has a legitimate business reason.   [Ban the Box Ordinance]

Family Medical Leave January 1, 2021
Maine

Employers with 10 or more employees must provide an hour of sick leave for every 40 hours they work, up to a maximum of 40 hours of time off a year. Paid time could be used for illness or a family emergency. Employers with 5 or fewer employers must allow an employee to accrue and use at least 40 hours of unpaid earned sick leave per year. [Act Authorizing Earned Employee Leave]

Sub-minimum Wage   Passed — June 16, 2020  Effective — June 16, 2020
Maine

Employers may no longer pay less than minimum wage to a person because they have a mental or physical disability.

Ban the Box Criminal Histories   Passed — January 30, 2020  Effective — February 29, 2020
Maryland

Employers with 10 or more employees must provide an hour of sick leave for every 40 hours they work, up to a maximum of 40 hours of time off a year. Paid time could be used for illness or a family emergency. Employers with 5 or fewer employers must allow an employee to accrue and use at least 40 hours of unpaid earned sick leave per year. [Act Authorizing Earned Employee Leave]

Paid Sick Leave   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Maryland

Expands the definition of family member for paid sick leave purposes to include legal ward of the employees, and a legal guardian or ward of the employee's spouse.

Salary Disclosure   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Maryland

Employers may not take adverse action against employees for inquiring about their own wages.

Salary History   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Maryland

Employers must provide job applicants with a wage range for their potential position upon request. Employers may not take adverse action against applicants for not providing a wage history or rely on an applicant's wage history for considering them for employment or determining wages.

Sexual Harassment Settlement Reporting   Passed — July 1, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Maryland

Employers with 50 or more employees must report information to the MD Commission on Civil Rights on or before 7/1/2020 the following: (1) number of settlement made by or on behalf of the employer after an allegation of sexual harassment by an employee, (2) number of times the employer has paid a settlement to resolve a sexual harassment allegation against the same employee over the past 10 years, and (3) number of settlements made after an allegation of sexual harassment that included a provision requiring both parties to keep the terms of the settlement confidential. Second report is due on or before 7/1/2022. [Disclosing Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Act survey]

Case Processing January 24, 2020
Massachusetts

Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination issued revisions to its procedural regulations.  Allow employers to move for reconsideration of the Commission’s probably cause determination at any time prior to the certification conference.   Grants the Commission the authority to conduct Commission-sponsored mediation overseen by the Investigating Commissioner.   Expands the discovery mechanisms available to employees at the administrative level. 

Paid Family and Medical Leave   Passed — July 1, 2020  Effective — January 21, 2021
Massachusetts

All private employers must provide covered individuals with paid family and medical leave.  Proposed amendments provide new definitions of key terms, guidance on the requirements for private plan exemptions, and information relating to the application of benefits.  [Draft revised Paid Family and Medical Leave regulations]

Civil Actions   Passed — May 12, 2020  Effective — August 28, 2020
Missouri

Raises the standards for punitive damages in civil actions. Provides that punitive damages may be awarded only if the plaintiff proves by “clear and convincing evidence that the defendant intentionally harmed the plaintiff without just causes or acted with deliberate and flagrant disregard for the safety of others.”  [S.B. 591]

Ban the Box Criminal Histories January 1, 2021
Missouri (St.Louis)

Restricts private employers with 10 or more employees to base hiring or promotion decisions on an applicant’s criminal history. Violators can lose their business license. [Ban the Box Ordinance]

Employee Protections May 8, 2020
Maryland

Employee will be required to implement certain measure to protect their employees from “heat-related illness” caused by heat stress.  Regulations to be develop by 10/1/2022.  [HB 722]

Equal Pay   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Maryland

Restricts how much an employer (or prospective employer) can inquire about an employee’s or applicant’s wage history. Also, provides protections to employees who wish not to voluntarily reveal wage history.  During the hiring process, if requested by an applicant, the employer must provide the wage range for the position. [HB123/SB217]

Facial Recognition May 8, 2020
Maryland

Restrictions on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) during the interview process.  Employers are not permitted to use facial recognition technology for the purposes of creating a facial template during the interview process unless the applicant allow for it.   [HB1202]

Hair Styles Associated with Race May 8, 2020
Maryland

Broadens the scope of the definition of “race” to “include traits associated with race, including hair texture, afro hairstyles, and protective hairstyles” which include braids, twists and locks.  [HB1444]

Mini-WARN   Passed — May 7, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Maryland

Employers implementing “reduction in operations” must provide 60 days’ advance notice to employees and others, and also provide continuation of health, pension, severance and/or other benefits.  Obligations triggered by the closure of all or a portion of the operations affecting as few as 15 employees, as well as by relocations of operations.   [HB1018/SB780]

Wages   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Maryland

Amends the Wage Payment and Collection Law by increasing the maximum amount of unpaid wages – from $3,000 to $5,000 – claimed by an employee for which the MD DOL may issue a complaint to an employer. [Maryland Wage Protection Act]

Board Make-Up May 13, 2019
Maryland

By 12/31/2022 all nonprofit, privately held, and publicly traded institutions and companies doing business in the State must have a minimum of 30% of women directors and measure their progress toward a goal of equal representation of men and women in leadership positions on an annual basis.  [SB 911]

Workplace Accidents   Passed — May 8, 2020  Effective — August 3, 2020
Maryland

Extends the reporting period from 30 to 45 days to an employee who suffered a hernia due to a workplace accident, or whose existing hernia was exacerbated by a workplace accident.  Creates an exception to the 60-day filing deadline for a compensation claim whereby an employee may still be able to obtain benefits if they file the claim within two years of the date of the injury unless the employer or its insurer has been prejudiced by the employee’s failure to report the injury sooner.  [SB784]

Board Make-Up June 3, 2020
Michigan

Beginning no later than 1/1/2021, each publicly held domestic or foreign corporation whose principal executive office is located within the State shall have a minimum of one female director on its board.  By 1/1/2023, if the number of directors is six or more, the corporation shall have at least three female directors; directors of five or more, the corporation shall have at least two female directors and where the number of directors is four or fewer, the corporation must have at least one female director.   [SB No. 115]

Medical Cannabis August 3, 2020
Nevada

Prohibits employers from declining to hire a prospective employee based on pre- employment marijuana drug tests. [AB 132]

Salary History January 1, 2020
New Jersey

Cannot screen a job applicant based on their salary history including prior wages or benefits or require the applicant’s salary history to satisfy minimum or maximum criteria. [NJ A1094]

Medical Cannabis July 2, 2019
New Jersey

Provides employment protections for authorized users of medical cannabis [Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Act]

Pay Statement   Passed — May 20, 2020  Effective — May 20, 2020
New Jersey

Amends the Wage Payment Law and requires employers with 10 or more employees to include the following information on employees' pay statements in addition to the already required deductions: (1) gross wages, (2) net wages, (3) rate of pay, and (4) number of hours worked during the pay period, if relevant to the wage calculation. [Wage Payment Law]

Nondisclosure Agreements March 18, 2019
New Jersey

Renders unenforceable nondisclosure provisions in settlement agreements that resolve discrimination-related claims. Bars enforcement of arbitration agreements. [SB 121]

Board Make-Up February 14, 2019
New Jersey

By 12/31/2019, each publicly held domestic or foreign corporation whose principal executive office is located within the State shall have a minimum of one female director on its board.  By 12/31/2021, if the number of directors is six or more, the corporation shall have at least three female directors; directors of five or more, the corporation shall have at least two female directors and where the number of directors is four or fewer, the corporation must have at least one female director.    [SB No. 3469]

Family Leave July 1, 2020
New Jersey

Expands paid family leave benefits to 12 weeks and intermittent leave to 56 days. Prohibits employers from discharging, harassing, discriminating or retaliation against an employee for requesting or use family leave benefits. [NJ Family Leave Act]

Hair styles associated with race December 19, 2019
New Jersey

Defines discrimination due to race as including discrimination based upon “traits historically associated with race, including, but not limited to, hair texture, hair type, and protective hairstyles” such as braids, locks and twists. [Create a Respectful and Open Workplace for Natural Hair Act]

Independent Contractor Status January 14, 2020
New Jersey

Amends the state’s “ABC test” for independent contractor status; prohibit NJ companies from utilizing independent contractor workforces. [SB S863]

Employee Misclassification   Passed — January 21, 2020  Effective — April 1, 2020
New Jersey

Requires businesses to post notices regarding employee misclassification “in a form issued by the Commissioner.” Prohibits retaliation against any employee for complaining about, filing an action regarding, or testifying in a proceeding about, worker misclassification. [A5843]  NJ Department of Labor and Workforce Development published the required postings in two sizes (11 x 17 and 8.5 x 11). Employers must conspicuously post the document “in a place or places accessible to all employees in each of the employer’s workplaces.”  Employers failed to display poster may be found guilty of disorderly persons offense and subject to fines between $100 and $1000.

Employee Classification   Passed — January 21, 2020  Effective — January 21, 2020
New Jersey

Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development has the authority to issue a stop-work order against an employer where any wage, benefit or employment tax law violation was found. [AB 5838]

State can impose financial penalties for misclassification. [A. 5839]

Joint liability can be imposed on labor contractors that provide misclassified workers to an employer. [A. 5840]

State has the authority to “name and shame” businesses that misclassify workers; employers will be prohibited from contracting with any public agency while their name remains on the list. [S. 4226]

Gives the State Treasure permission to share tax data with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development for a more efficient system of enforcing misclassification laws. [S. 42329]

Wages January 21, 2020
New Jersey

Expands the Wage Theft Act and imposes liability on owners, directors, officers, and managers who violate NJ wage or tax laws, on behalf of an employer or a staff agency. (AB 5840]

WARN   Passed — January 21, 2020  Effective — July 19, 2020
New Jersey

Expands employers’ advance notice and severance pay obligation. Triggered by a termination of 50 employees, regardless of tenure or hours of work, aggregating all terminations across NJ. Notice period increases to 90 days and mandates severance pay of one week for each year of employment. If full notice is not given, severance increases by four weeks of pay. [SB 3170] Amendments include: (1) no longer site-specific, (2) WARN notice now required upon termination of 50 or more employees “at or reporting to the establishment,” (3) disasters and national emergencies excluded, (4) requires employers to provide at least 90 days of advance notice to affected employees, (5) employers must now pay affected employees one week’s severance pay for each full year of employment by the next regular payday, and (6) employers cannot obtain a waiver of any severance payments without approval by the Commissioner of the DOL or court. [SB 3170]

Arrest and Conviction History (Ban the Box)   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — March 28, 2020
New Mexico

Prohibits private employers from inquiring about an applicant’s arrest or conviction history on an initial employment application. Employers may inquire and consider an applicant’s criminal history after reviewing the application and discussing employment with the applicant. [Criminal Offender Employment Act]

Pregnancy Accommodation   Passed — May 20, 2020  Effective — May 20, 2020
New Mexico

Amends the NM Human Rights Act to require covered employers to provide a reasonable accommodation for an employee or applicant arising from pregnancy, childbirth, unless it creates an undue hardship. Cannot require an employment to take paid or unpaid leave if another reasonable accommodation can be provided, unless the employee voluntarily requires to be placed on leave. The Act also includes pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions as a protected class. 

Sexual Harassment, Discrimination and Retaliation   Passed — March 4, 2020  Effective — May 20, 2020
New Mexico

Limits the use of nondisclosure agreements in sexual misconduct cases.  Restricts the use of confidentiality provisions in settlement agreements involving harassment, discrimination and retaliation claims.  [H.B. 21]

Gender Identity November 1, 2019
New York

Prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression in housing, employment and public accommodations. Model Sexual Harassment Policy for NY employers issued in October 2018 includes harassment on the basis of gender expression, gender identity and the status of being transgender. [Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act]

Sexual Harassment Claims   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — August 12, 2020
New York

The statute of limitations is extended from one year to three years for employees to file sexual harassment complaints with the NY Division on Human Rights.

Whistleblower   Passed — June 17, 2020  Effective — June 17, 2020
New York

Amendment to the NY Healthcare Whistleblower law, which adds a new type of "protected activity" to the list of complaints covered by law, to include complaints about "improper quality of workplace safety."

Call Center Jobs   Passed — June 30, 2020  Effective — June 30, 2020
New York

The NY Call Center Jobs Act requires covered center employers to provide advance-notice of at least 100 days to the Labor Commissioner if the employers intend to relocate out of state.

Board Make-Up June 27, 2020
New York

Requires each corporation authorized to do business in NY file a biennial statement disclosing the total number of directors and total number of female directors on its board.  [Section 408 of the NY Business Corporation Law]

Harassment April 1, 2019
New York

Requires all private New York City employers with 15 or more employees to conduct annual anti-sexual harassment training. [NYC Int. 0632-2018]

Salary History   Passed — July 10, 2019  Effective — July 10, 2020
New York

Prohibits all public and private employers from asking prospective or current employees about their salary history or compensation. Prohibits businesses from seeking similar information from other sources. [SB S6549]

Reproductive Health November 1, 2019
New York

Forbids discrimination based on an employee’s “reproductive health decision making.” Employers must update their employee handbooks to ban discrimination and retaliation based on an employee’s or dependent’s reproductive health decision making. [NY Labor Law Section 203-e]

Lactation March 18, 2019
New York City

Employers with four or more employees must provide a lactation room accommodations for breastfeeding individuals [No. 879-A] Requires covered employers to implement written lactation room accommodation policies to be distributed to all employees [No. 905-A]

Drug Testing May 10, 2020
New York City

Prohibits employers, labor organizations, and employment agencies from pre-employment drug testing for marijuana and THC as a condition of employment.  Provisions of the law do not apply to people applying to work in the following positions: (1) law enforcement, (2) certain construction jobs, (3) jobs requiring a commercial driver’s license, (4) jobs requiring supervision of care of children, medical patients or vulnerable persons, and (5) jobs with the “potential to significantly impact the health and safety of employees or members of the public.” [Int. 1445-A]

 

Sexual Harassment Training   Passed — January 11, 2020  Effective — January 11, 2020
New York City

NY City's Commission on Human Rights guidance regarding an amendment to the city's Human Rights Law which expands protections under the law to independent contractors and freelancers. Employers are not required to provide these groups with sexual harassment prevention training. Similar to employees and interns, independent contractors must receive this training if they work for an employer of 15 or more people, work more than 80 hours in a calendar year and work for at least 90 days. [FAQs]

Military Benefits May 20, 2020
Ohio

Allows active-duty military members' children and spouses with special needs to maintain their Medicaid home and community-based service waivers while stationed in Ohio. [H.B. 287]

Allows active duty military personnel and their families stationed in Ohio, in-state college tuition costs. [H.B. 16]

Workers' Compensation   Passed — June 16, 2020  Effective — September 16, 2020
Ohio

Addresses temporary total compensation, safety violations, state fund settlements and court appeals. New statutory language precludes payment of temporary and permanent total compensation where the economic loss is the direct result of reasons unrelated to the injury. New law shortens the time during which an inactive claim remains open for payments by moving the claim lapse date from the date of the last payment of medical services back to the date the services were rendered. [Am. Sub. H.B. 81]

Hair Discrimination   Passed — January 10, 2020  Effective — January 10, 2020
Ohio (Toledo)

Prohibits discrimination based on "natural hair types and hair styles or head wraps commonly associated with race, culture, or religion." [City Ordinance O-541-19]

Salary History   Passed — June 25, 2020  Effective — June 25, 2020
Ohio (Toledo)

Employers with at least 15 employees are prohibited from: (1) asking job applicants about salary history, (2) screening applicants based on their current or prior wages, benefits, other compensation, (3) relying on an applicant's salary history in deciding on employment or salary determination, and (4) refusing to hire or otherwise retaliate against an applicant who fails to disclose his or her salary history. [City Ordinance O-173-19]

Medical Marijuana March 14, 2020
Oklahoma

Prohibits employers from engaging in certain employment practices with applicants or employees that hold medical marijuana licenses [AB2612 - OK Medical Marijuana and Patient Protection Act]

Equal Pay January 1, 2019
Oregon

Prohibits pay discrimination on the basis of protected class, as well as screening job applicants based on current or past compensation. New posting requirements. [Equal Pay Act]

Anti-Discrimination Policy   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Oregon

Employers are required to  adopt an anti-discrimination policymake it available to employees within the workplace, and provide a copy to new hires and to employees who make a complaint about discrimination or harassment.

Pregnancy & Lactation Accommodation January 1, 2020
Oregon

Applies to employers with six or more employees and outlines specific accommodations employers must provide and actions that may not take. Also, requires new notice requirements. [HB 2341]

Nondisclosure Agreement   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Oregon

Employers are restricted from entering into nondisclosure or non-disparagement agreements at the time of hiring and during settlement and severance negotiations that prevents the employee from disclosing or discussing discrimination or sexual assault.  [ORS 659A.370]

Scheduling   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Oregon

Retail, hospitality and food service employers with 500 or more employees worldwide must post the written work schedule at least 14 calendar days before the first day of the work schedule.  [Predictive scheduling law]

Lactation Accommodation September 29, 2019
Oregon

Applies to employers with 25 or more employees and provides an undue hardship exemption from lactation break requirements. Also provides flexibility as to frequency and length of breaks. [HB 2593]

Discrimination and Harassment   Passed — June 11, 2019  Effective — October 1, 2020
Oregon

For discrimination and harassment settlements, employees may not be required to disclose alleged conduct or disparage employers or alleged perpetrators. Employees cannot force no-rehire provisions as a term of settlement. Increases statute of limitations for lawsuits involving workplace misconduct from one year to five years. [SB 729 Workplace Fairness Act]

Employee Protections May 1, 2020
Pennsylvania

Requires companies and individuals who employ domestic workers to provide them with written employment contracts, meal and rest breaks, and paid and unpaid leave.  Domestic workers is someone who: (1) cares for a child, serves as a companion or caretaker for the sick, elderly or person with a disability, (3) does housekeeping or house cleaning, (4) cooks, (5) provides food or butler service, (6) parks cars, (7) cleans laundry,  (8) gardens, (9) does personal organizing and (10) other performs other domestic services. [Domestic Worker Bill of Rights]

Salary History   Passed — January 23, 2017  Effective — January 29, 2020
Pennsylvania (Philadelphia)

Prohibits employers that employ individuals in the City from asking applicants about their salary history or to rely on an applicants’ wage history to determine wages for the job for which the applicant applied. Shortly after passing, the Chamber of Commerce sued alleging that it violated the employer’s First Amendment rights. The District Court agreed with the Chamber; however, on appear the Third Circuit unanimously held for the City. [Wage Equity Ordinance]

Equal Pay March 14, 2020
Puerto Rico

Regulations are to establish the organization and functioning of the Equal Pay Program to encourage gender pay equity.  Program is voluntary for employers the legislature is considering amendments to require all employers to conduct a self-assessment of their business for compliance. [Act No. 16 - Puerto Rico’s Equal Pay Act]

Criminal and Salary History August 6, 2019
South Carolina – Columbia

Private employers with contracts or vending relationships with the City are limited from the use of criminal background checks and are banned from inquiring about salary history on job applications. [Conviction and Wage History Prohibition in City Employment and by City Contractors and City Vendors]

Lactation Support   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — June 25, 2020
South Carolina - Columbia

Prohibits employers from discriminating against employees who choose to express breast milk in the workplace. Employers must: (1) take steps to provide a designated area, near the workplace, in which employees can express breast milk in privacy and (2) provide a reasonable amount of unpaid break time for lactation. [HR 3200 SC Lactation Support Act]

Discrimination Protections   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
South Dakota

The SD Human Rights Act is amended to provide discrimination protections to interns.

Pregnancy   Passed — June 22, 2020  Effective — October 1, 2020
Tennessee

Requires every employer with at least 15 employees to make a reasonable accommodation  for an employee’s or prospective employee’s medical needs arising from pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, unless it imposes an undue hardship.  [SB 2520 - Pregnant Workers Fairness Act]

Accommodation   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — March 28, 2020
Utah

Amends and clarifies provisions of the medical cannabis laws; private employers are not required to accommodate the use of medical cannabis and have policies restricting the use of medical cannabis by applicants and employees.  [SB 121]

Medical Marijuana   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Utah

Amended its medical marijuana law to include that private employers are not required to accommodate the use of medical marijuana and are allowed to have policies restricting the use of medical marijuana by applicants or employees. [H.B. 3001 Utah Medical Cannabis Act]

Nondisclosure February 22, 2019
Virginia

May not require job applicants or current employees to execute nondisclosure agreements that would conceal the details of any “sexual assault” claim an employee may have against the employer. [VA Coe §40.1-28.01]

Criminal Background Inquiries   Passed — July 1, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Virginia

Employers are prohibited from requiring job applicants to disclose information concerning any arrest, criminal charge or conviction for possession of marijuana.  An applicant does not have to answer any questions or disclose information related to past criminal charges for such possession.  [HB 972/SB 2]

New Hire Reporting   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — September 1, 2020
Virginia

Newly hired independent contractors must be reported according to the same requirements as newly hired employees if they have not previously had a contract with an employer or have previously entered into a contract with an employer and have received a payment based on a contract after receiving no payments for at least 60 consecutive days. [FAQs]

Emergency Preparedness   Passed — July 15, 2020  Effective — July 27, 2020
Virginia

Employers will need to comply with the Emergency Standard and may have to revise policies and procedures for dealing with their workforce as soon as possible or potentially face VA Department of Labor & Industry (VDOLI) enforcement actions.  Within 60 days of enactment, employers will have to train their employees on infectious disease preparedness and response plans.

Worker's Compensation   Passed — July 1, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Virginia

Once an initial claim for benefits has been filed, an employer will have 30 days following the receipt of an order from the VA Workers’ Compensation Commission to respond to the claim.  Employer must elaborate on its response if it intends to deny the claim or if it cannot yet determine whether to accept or deny the claim. Failure to file a timely response may result in a $500 civil penalty for each failure up to $5,000 if willful.  [Virginia code §65.2-601.2]

Hairstyles March 3, 2020
Virginia

Amends the VA HRA to prohibit discrimination on the basis of hairstyles or “because of or on the basis of traits historically associated with race, including hair texture, hair type, and protective hairstyles such as braids, locks and twists.” (HB 1514)

Wage Paystub   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — January 1, 2020
Virginia

Requires employers to provide detailed paystubs, either in electronic format or hard copy, to all of their employees on each regular pay date.  It must show: (1) employee’s name and address, (2) hours they worked during the pay period, (3) rate of pay, (4) gross wages that they earned during the pay period, and (5) the amount and purpose of any deductions taken from the employee’s wages during the pay period.  Not being enforced until 7/1/2020. [Wage Payment Act]

Wage Theft   Passed — June 19, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Virginia

Creates private cause of action for employees who are victim of wage theft when an employer fails to fully compensate their employees for all hours worked.  Employers who knowingly fail to comply will also be subjected to liquidated damages or up to trip the amount of unpaid wages. [HB 123]   Holds general contractors liable for subcontractors’ violations if they knew or should have known that the subcontractor was not paying employees properly.

Marijuana Decriminalization   Passed — May 21, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Virginia

Decriminalizes simple marijuana possession and prohibits employers, including state agencies and state and local governments) from requiring applicants to disclose information related to past criminal charges for such possession. Gives applicants a statutory right not to disclose such information to their prospective employers.  Restrict employers’ questions during the interview process.  Prohibits educational institutions from demanding the same information from applicants for admission.    [HB 972/SB 2

Work Sharing   Passed — April 22, 2020  Effective — January 1, 2021
Virginia

Allows employers that are experiencing a slowdown in business to save jobs by reducing the number of hours their employees work instead of laying off a portion of those employees. In exchange, employees whose hours have been reduced can recover prorated unemployment benefits tied to the amount of their reduced hours.  [Work share program]

Non-Compete Agreements   Passed — August 3, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Virginia

Employers may not enter into, enforce, or threaten to enforce a covenant not to compete against a low-wage employee. A low-wage worker is an individual whose average weekly earnings for the 52 weeks prior to termination are less than the average weekly wage in the state.  On 7/1/2020, the threshold will be $1,137 per week.  [SB 480]

Pay Transparency   Passed — April 22, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Virginia

Prohibits employers from discharging or taking any other retaliatory action against an employee for discussing wages or compensation with another employee. Does not apply to “employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants…as part of their essential job functions.”  Civil penalty of up to $100 per violation against an employer who violates the law. 

Employment Contracts   Passed — March 19, 2020  Effective — June 11, 2020
Washington

Amends the Washington Sales Representative Act and requires employers of wholesale sales representatives (reps) to enter employment contracts with those sales reps who earn commissions for soliciting orders for wholesale purchases.  Issued to address instances in which wholesale sales reps were not paid commissions for sales they had made before separation from employment.  [HB2474]

Service Animal January 1, 2019
Washington

Amends discrimination law to define “service animal” and create a maximum penalty of $500 for misrepresenting an animal as a service animal. [HB 2822]

Workplace Violence January 1, 2020
Washington

Medical facilities must prevent and track workplace violence, covering any physical assault or verbal threat of physical assault against an employee. Hospitals must have a committee to address violence, develop and implement a plan and provide violence prevention training. New law implementation guide. [HB 1931]

Board Make-Up June 11, 2020
Washington

Amends the Washington Business Corporation Act (WBCA) that requires public companies to either have a “gender-diverse board” by 1/1/2022 or comply with new board diversity disclosure requirements.  [SB 6037]

Hair Textures and Styles   Passed — March 19, 2020  Effective — June 11, 2020
Washington

Amends Washington Law Against Discrimination to include a definition of "race" as being "inclusive of traits historically associated or perceived to be associated with race including, but not limited to, such hairstyles as afros, braids, locks, and twists." [HB 2602]

Immigrant Discrimination   Passed — June 11, 2020  Effective — June 11, 2020
Washington

Washington Law Against Discrimination is amended to prohibit discrimination based on citizenship and immigration status.

Lactation Accommodation   Passed — June 11, 2020  Effective — June 11, 2020
Washington

Employers with 15 or more employees may no longer require certification to support the need for a lactation accommodation.

Pregnancy Discrimination   Passed — June 11, 2020  Effective — June 11, 2020
Washington

The time to file an administrative complaint with the WA Human Rights Commission regarding pregnancy discrimination is extended from six months to one year. 

Hotel Employee Protections   Passed — July 1, 2020  Effective — July 1, 2020
Washington (Seattle)

Hotel Employee Protections Ordinances requires hotel employers to: (1) take certain steps to protect employees from violent or harassing conduct by guests, (2) limit the workload to reduce frequency and occurrence injuries associated with room cleaning, (3) provide increased access to medical care, and (4) take actions to reduce job insecurity.

 

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