Employment laws govern all the members of a business, including the boss or supervisor. While employees must follow certain rules in the workplace, employer actions cannot violate local or federal laws, or the employer may get into legal trouble.
It is ultimately up to your employer to ensure they are compliant with the relevant laws. However, you should also be aware of these laws in case your supervisor violates them. Here are a few key points to remember.
EMPLOYERS CANNOT PROHIBIT YOU FROM DISCUSSING SALARY
Employers can discourage workers from discussing salaries, but they cannot take steps to stop you from having these conversations according to the National Labor Relations Act. You and your co-workers are free to discuss salary at work, when meeting socially, or online. Salary comparisons are often an issue of work equality, so they must take place to ensure the staff receives fair treatment.
THEY CANNOT ASK YOU TO WORK “OFF THE CLOCK”
If the Fair Labor Standards Act covers you as a worker, your employer cannot ask you to work unpaid hours. You must receive compensation for all work you perform based on your current rate of pay. You are free to refuse unpaid work, and the employer cannot fire you for refusing. Retaliation is also against federal laws and considered a violation of your rights.
THEY CANNOT CHANGE YOUR WORKER CLASSIFICATION
Employers typically save money when hiring independent contractors. Workplaces do not have to provide contractors benefits, nor do they have to pay taxes on their behalf. However, there are some key differences between employees and contractors, and employers cannot classify a worker as a contractor just to save money.
For instance, an employee will work according to their employer’s schedule, while a contractor will work at their own pace. An employee receives their pay on a weekly or monthly schedule, while a contractor is usually paid per assignment.