Federal employment laws affect all employers equally, no matter where employees reside. They are typically regulated with clear and predictable criteria. Most federal laws are long-standing, and the courts have made it plain regarding how to interpret them.
State laws can be very different. With the federal government gridlocked most of the time, states have taken matters into their own hands and are busy passing employment laws that affect both statewide and local jurisdictions. A law with the same or similar name in another state, may not be the same law in your state, and understanding the specific requirements of those laws is crucial. It is also true that many new laws are being passed in different states, and the regulators and state courts have yet to define how the laws will be enforced.
Finally, some states are passing laws that they say apply to employers in other states or localities who have customers or employees who are there either permanently or temporarily. It is unknown how the courts will determine to what extent those states or localities can control the behavior of employers outside their jurisdiction.
While these laws continue to proliferate, you must be aware of ongoing changes in states where you have employees.
Employers Council can help. We have attorneys licensed in Arizona, California, Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming, in addition to other states, and we inform employers of updates to the law in our Hot Topics and Bulletin publications.
Our online resources allow you to look up employment laws in states of interest to you. We also update FYI’s and other documents to provide practical information to you that focus on Arizona, California, Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming. We also have a resource for all fifty states. Simply log in to our website and look for the CCH Answers Now resource.