This is part 2 of a 2 part series. To read part 1, click here.
Now that you have read the top 5 NH Labor Law Violations, keep reading – you don’t want to get caught out on the last 5!: https://www.nh.gov/labor/inspection/violation-free.htm
The sixth most frequent violation is an employer’s “failure to secure and maintain workers’ compensation coverage and misclassification of employees.” Employers run afoul of this law when an employee has been misclassified as an independent contractor. Independent contractors do not have to be covered by a company’s workers’ compensation insurance because they are not employees. However, if the independent contractor was misclassified, then the employer will be on the hook for the time period that the independent contractor was not covered. The fine is hefty: $100 per day of non-compliance, plus other potential fines.
The seventh most frequent violation is an employer’s “failure to pay minimum wage for all hours worked.” Some employers pay non-exempt employees on a salary basis thinking that the employees must work as many hours as needed to get the job done. This is an error because non-exempt employees paid on a salary basis are still entitled to minimum wage and overtime. NH employers should monitor carefully the actual hours worked of non-exempt, salaried employees to ensure that they are being paid minimum wage and overtime when worked.
The eighth violation is employing undocumented workers. Seems obvious, but employers are not always diligent about filling out the Form I-9 and reviewing carefully supporting documents.
The ninth violation is regarding making illegal deductions from wages. Generally, employers can make deductions that are statutorily required – like social security taxes, federal income taxes, etc. Before making any other deductions from an employee’s pay, employers must ensure that the deduction is allowed under the law. Even when a deduction is allowed, it would have to be in writing and signed by both parties with other statutorily required information contained in the document. When an employer has an oral agreement with an employee to make a deduction and makes the deduction, the employer has violated the law.
Finally, the tenth violation concerns an employer’s “failure to have a written safety plan, joint loss management committee and safety summary form if required.” Employers with 15 or more employees are required to have those documents in place. The DOL provides great resources for employers to aid in compliance: https://www.nh.gov/labor/inspection/safety-training.htm; https://www.nh.gov/labor/forms/safety-summary.htm.
Now that you have reached the end, reach out to your employment counsel to go over any sticky issues to ensure that you are not contributing to the DOL’s statistics!