I was assigned the task of researching applicable employment laws in Austin, Texas for one of Atwood and Allen Consulting’s clients, Mr. Bradley Stonefield, owner of Landslide Limousine. This client plans to open a small business in the limousine service industry, and to hire approximately 25 employees during the first year. In order for this business to start operations that are legally sound and to ensure its success, the following Employment Law Compliance Plan has been developed. Employment Law Compliance Plan
This Employment Law Compliance Plan focuses on four employment laws: three (3) federal laws 1 and one (1) state law. The federal laws of broad scope governing employment and illegal discrimination are the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. The state employment law this client will have to abide by is the Texas Minimum Wage Law. Noncompliance with the provisions stipulated by these laws might result in administrative penalties, lawsuits, complaints, criminal sanctions, or adverse financial consequences due to back pay or compensation entitlements that might be ruled in court. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), as amended in 1986, protects employees who are 40 year old and over from discrimination in pay, benefits, or continued employment. Failure to comply with this law could result in lawsuits, back pay, and additional compensation for the employee filing the complaint.
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) law that prohibits any type of discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin. Because the client plans to employ about 25 individuals, and the coverage of Title VII includes public and private employers with 15 or more employees, compliance with this law will be critical. Noncompliance with this law could result in litigation on the basis of unfair discrimination, as stipulated by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1985 (IRCA) applies to all employers in the United States regardless of how many individuals are employed.
The client must comply by ensuring only authorized aliens are hired, and by verifying the identity and work permits. There are severe penalties for noncompliance that include fines up to $1,500 per employee, and even criminal sanctions. The Texas Minimum Wage Law 3 establishes the minimum wage for non-exempt employees, which in July 2009 was set to $7.25. In addition, this law requires employers to provide employees with written earning statements, has provisions for agricultural workers, and specifies which employers are exempt from its coverage. Failure to comply might have adverse impact on the client since there are civil remedies for violating this law. Final Recommendations
The findings of my research indicate that there are other applicable employment laws Mr. Stonefield might have to consider. These laws are the Occupational Safety and Health Act, the Texas Labor Code Anti-Discrimination Provisions, and the Texas Workers Compensation Act. 2 Because state and federal laws can be amended, it is highly recommended for this client to make periodic inquiries, or bring any employment-related concerns to Atwood and Allen Consulting.
Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate in contacting me.
1 Cascio, W. F. (2013). Managing Human Resources: Productivity, Quality of Work Life, Profits (9th ed.). Boston, MA: McGraw-Hill Irwin.
2 Fox, W. & Davenport, A. (2013). Texas’ 10 Most Critical Employment Laws. Retrieved from http://nr.nlh1.com/downloadablePremiums/TX10MostCr.pdf
3 Texas Workforce Commission. (2015). Texas Minimum Wage Law. Retrieved from http://www.twc.state.tx.us/jobseekers/texas-minimum-wage-law