Applicable Employment Laws

It is important to know which laws apply when drafting a handbook. Most employment laws apply based on where an employee physically works, which traditionally was where the company was located. But think about how this may have changed during the COVID-19 pandemic when people were working from home. During the pandemic, I suspect every employment lawyer was busy drafting provisions that would be legally compliant based on where employees live. For instance, as you’ll see in this Unit, Oregon has a paid sick leave requirement. What if your client is in Florida and now one of its employees is working from their home in Seattle, Oregon? Seattle also has a paid sick leave requirement (Paid Sick and Safe Time Ordinance). It is important not to miss the subnational governments when researching employment laws.

In addition, some states (Illinois, California, Alaska) have laws that require employers to cover costs an employee incurs while telecommuting. If your client is located in Pennsylvania, you would normally not think about this but now need to if the client has an employee working from one of those states (or Washington DC which has a similar requirement).


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To the extent possible under law, Samantha Prince has waived all copyright and related or neighboring rights to Entrepreneurship Law: Company Creation, except where otherwise noted.