Employment laws as a proof of your rights.

There are plenty of labor and employment statutes that protect worker’s rights. Before 1964 an employer could reject an applicant because of his/her race, religion, sex or national origin or fire an employee because of that. Now with the help of federal and state government and its legislation system workers are protected from unfair treatment or unsafe working condition. There are several types of employment statutes including civil rights, family and medical leave, workers’ compensation, and labor relations laws. Other types of employment statutes include workplace safety, compensation and child labor, and immigrant employment statutes. For example, in Pennsylvania it is required for employers to provide their staff who work more than 40 hrs/week with overtime pay. Also Pennsylvania employment laws regulate such things as meal breaks, minimum wage, worker’s compensation etc.

What are the key federal laws which protect employee rights?

Civil laws:

  • Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This law protects employees of a company as well as job applicants. These statutes prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, pregnancy status, age, and disability. This employment statute covers all employers with 15 or more employees. In 1978, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act amended Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1978 and made it illegal to discriminate against pregnant women in matters related to employment. The law also established the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), a bipartisan commission that is made up of five members appointed by the president.
  • Age Discrimination in Employment Act: Originally came into effect in 1967, but have since been strengthened by other acts and amendments. Prevents employers from giving preferential treatment to younger workers to the detriment of older workers; only applies to workers 40 years of age and older, and to workplaces with 20 or more employees; doesn’t prevent an employer from favoring older employees over younger employees The Age Discrimination Act prohibits discrimination based on a person’s age.
  • The Americans With Disabilities Act, or ADA, was signed into law in 1990. This act prohibits discrimination based on disability and provides protections for people with a wide range of disabilities, including physical, mental, and genetic. Employers are not allowed to make hiring and firing decisions based on disability and must make reasonable accommodations for job applicants and employees with disabilities.

Family and medical leave laws

Allows an employee to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave within a 12 month period. This employment law allows employees to take time off work to care for a sick family member, to care for a newborn baby. Stipulates that to qualify for the leave, the employee must have worked for the employer for 12 months and for 1,250 hours in the 12 months preceding the leave; preserves qualified employees’ positions for the duration of the leave. This family and medical leave law also requires that the employee work at a company with at least 50 employees working in a 75-mile direction.

Compensation and child labor laws

The Fair Labor Standards Act, originally passed in 1938, Provides regulation as to the duration of work days, and breaks an employer must provide; governs applicable salary and overtime requirements set out by the federal government. This law also provides guidelines on the employment of teenagers under the age of 18.

Workplace safety laws

The Occupational Safety and Health Act requires employers to keep the workplace safe and healthy for employees. This employment law protects employees from recognized hazards such as exposure to extreme noise, toxic chemicals, unsanitary conditions, and mechanical dangers. The law also protects employees from repetitive injuries and infectious diseases, among many other conditions.

Immigrant employment laws

In 1986, Congress passed the Immigration Reform and Control Act. This law makes it illegal for an employer to recruit or hire those immigrants who are not authorized to work in the United States. Employers cannot recruit or employ any known illegal immigrants.

Federal laws include all the ones above but are not limited to them.

Remember, as an employee you are protected by federal and state laws. Our team of attorneys knows how to fight for your rights. Do not hesitate to contact us.

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