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What you need to know about multi-state compliance

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More companies are having to jump into the thorny quagmire of multi-state compliance when it comes to taxes, benefits and record-keeping. We've gone over four "big picture" issues multi-state employers need to address here. In this post, we dive into the weeds to share a more detailed list of the types of laws that can exist on both a state and local level that impact how a company schedules and pays its workers. Multi-state compliance isn't just a matter of payroll calculations—multi-state compliance has operational and managerial impact.

Laws and Regulations

Let's start with laws and regulations that impact managers' ability to schedule workers. Smart, efficient scheduling is key to managing labor costs. Worse, running afoul of scheduling laws makes a company vulnerable to lawsuits and civil penalties. Scheduling laws and regulations can cover:

  • Overtime, such as when overtime pay kicks in and how much overtime can be scheduled for a worker over a specific period of time.

  • Meal and rest break laws, such as how much time, when it can be taken, and is it paid or unpaid.

  • Family leave time which can differ from federal law; what qualifies for family leave and  how much time must be given.

  • Holiday and paid time off laws; how much has to be offered, how much flexibility needs to be provided.

  • Be on the lookout for the growing trend in fair scheduling laws, especially on the city level, which tackle issues like "on call scheduling" and minimum weekly hours.

how the right time clock can improve time and attendance reporting

Working Terms and Conditions

Then there are the laws and regulations that impact working terms and conditions, such as

  • Drug-testing laws; for example, is testing to enforce a company's drug-free workplace policy acceptable in a jurisdiction where marijuana use on personal time may be legal?

  • What sort of contractual provisions or agreements are permitted and under what conditions? This applies to scope of noncompete agreements and what qualifies as a valid work contract.

  • Nursing laws, including whether new parents can have infants at the office with them.

  • Gun laws, such as open carry and conceal carry laws, where the law allows guns to be carried or stored (e.g., in their car).

  • Scope of access HR must provide workers to their individual files.

Indeed, local working terms and conditions can vary widely. For example, it's illegal to discriminate on the basis of height or weight in Michigan. In Virginia, employers can be held liable for defamation for untrue statements in employee evaluations. You can read more unusual HR laws here.

When it comes to payroll itself, there's more to address than just correctly calculating state withholding (although that is a biggie):

  • Does the state or locality have a minimum wage law?

  • Does the local law allow a company to mandate tip pooling?

  • How often do workers have to be paid?

  • What methods can be used to pay workers; can the employer require direct deposit?

  • What information must be on the worker's pay stub?

Multi-state compliance is a challenge and an opportunity

Each new jurisdiction a company enters, even by virtue of a single worker, brings with it a whole new layer of HR, payroll and legal compliance challenges. However, having to worry about multi-state compliance means a company is growing, which provides opportunity.

Getting multi-state compliance right requires professional guidance and technical solutions that make executing the professionals' guidance easier. Tools like employee time clocks that capture the location where work was done, not just the time and date of the work, help ensure accurate payroll calculations and create a record for compliance management. Contact one of ATS's consultants to learn more about how the right time clock can support your company's compliance needs.

how the right time clock can improve time and attendance reporting


Biometric Usage: Growing concerns over the privacy and security of biometrics are driving government regulations surrounding the definition of personal data and how to protect it. These regulations vary from country to country, state-to-state, and in some cases city by city. Most often the governing regulations are dictated based on the location where the information is being collected. It is important to understand the local regulations in the geographic areas in which you operate. If you are uncertain regarding your regulatory obligations, we encourage you to consult with your legal counsel.