What are the main characteristics of employment law?
The area of legal practice known as employment law covers the rights, obligations, and responsibilities within the employer-employee relationship. Employment laws includes topics like wages, workplace safety, discrimination, and wrongful termination.
What Is Employment Law?
Employment law is a set of rules and regulations governing the employer-employee relationship. This includes most aspects of the working relationship, from hiring, to termination, to wages and hours, overtime, and payments safeguards. Employment laws can be federal, state, or local, and are designed to fairly and legally protect workers.
Under employment law, employers are held to certain standards of conduct when it comes to the following areas:
1. Hiring: Employers must not discriminate when it comes to hiring decisions. This includes prohibitions against age, gender, race, religion, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation, and physical or mental disability discrimination.
2. Wages and Hours: Employees must be paid for their time worked and must work no more than the legally mandated maximum hours in a single day or week.
3. Overtime: Employees who work more than the mandated maximum hours in a single day or week must be compensated with overtime pay.
4. Safety: Employers are required to provide a safe and healthy working environment through a combination of workplace training, hazard elimination, and implementation of safety equipment and gear.
5. Termination: Employers are required to provide reasonable notice or severance pay to employees they terminate or force out, protect employees’ work records, and must not terminate an employee in violation of an employment agreement.
6. Sexual Harassment: Employers must ensure that their workplaces are free from discrimination and harassment, regardless of gender or sexual orientation.
When hiring, employers should be aware of all relevant employment laws to ensure compliance with both state and federal regulations. The penalties for failure to observe employment laws can be severe, not to mention the costly and disruptive litigation it might generate.
By becoming familiar with employment law and the rights that employees have, employers can work to create a safe and productive work environment for all of their staff.