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Remote Workers Create Unique Labor Law Posting Concerns

10/24/2017
labor law posting requirements for remote workers

Labor law posting requirements can be confusing, but the rules get even murkier when it comes to remote workers.

By law, employers are responsible for communicating the same mandatory information to home-based workers as those onsite. Yet, regulations don’t specify if the format should be paper or electronic. Because the law isn’t precise on this matter, employers must use their best judgment. Here is some guidance on making that decision.

How Often Do Your Remote Workers Visit the Office?

How you deliver labor law postings to your remote workers may depend upon how often they visit the office. If your remote workers visit the office a few times a month and current labor law postings are prominently displayed for all employees to see, that should be sufficient. But if those employees visit less frequently or not at all, you should consider making the notices available via email or the Internet, in a format they can access any time.

Posting can get particularly complicated if your remote employees work in different states, because it’s not always clear which state laws apply. Basic employment rights, such as minimum wage, overtime and safety issues, are governed by the laws where an employee works, not lives.

Depending on how your company is structured, out-of-state employees could be covered by the laws governing the location of your company’s headquarters AND the laws of the state where the employee works. To be safe and to cover all the bases, you should provide both sets of state-specific postings to remote staffers, because compliance is based on an array of factors.

Paper or Electronic — How Do You Decide?

Information from labor law postings must be communicated to all employees, regardless of where they work. Because the law isn’t clear on how this should be done, it’s recommended that you transmit the information electronically. That way, workers can download, view and acknowledge receipt of all required postings. This format satisfies your obligation to communicate their rights to employees, as covered in mandatory federal and state notices.

Again, employees who work at home, but who occasionally report to the office, are in a gray area. The law isn’t definitive on how frequently a remote worker must have access to physical wall posters to be covered. The U.S. Department of Labor suggests that if an employee reports to a company’s physical office three or four times a month, physical postings at the business are adequate. However, if the employee reports there less, the DOL recommends electronic postings.

Also, if your company has consultants at multiple client sites, it’s important to determine if your clients display up-to-date labor law posters. If they don’t, you could be held legally responsible. Find out and then work with them to get it done, if necessary. You can also provide the appropriate postings to consultants electronically.

Year-Round Compliance Can Be Easy

Sound like a lot to manage? You don’t have to do it alone! Instead, turn to our dedicated posting service to stay current and protected. In a single year, it’s not unusual for the Poster Guard® Compliance Protection legal team to identify and track hundreds of federal, state, local and industry-specific posting changes (including minimum wage increases). Changes can be frequent and complex, requiring continual monitoring and expert interpretation. Poster Guard offers a downloadable labor law poster service that automatically sends links to updated posters so your business is never out of compliance. With Poster Guard® Compliance Protection, you receive 365 days of hassle-free labor law posting compliance. Best of all, you’re guaranteed 100% compliance.