Contrary to what some might think, many business owners, regardless of the size of their businesses, are interested in not only monitoring their bottom lines, but also in keeping their employees happy as they work to keep their businesses thriving. However, besides the dollar signs, a business owner should also be concerned with avoiding employee lawsuits. Most Cincinnati employment lawyers know being able to resolve employer/employee disputes without litigation is advantageous for everyone involved. There are several things employers should do to avoid the courtroom and focus on the success of the business.
If An Employee Is Owed Overtime, Pay Them
Generally speaking, if an employee works more than 40 hours in one work week, he or she is entitled to overtime pay. However, not all employees are entitled to overtime, and some employers improperly try to use this to their advantage. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which is a federal wage and hour law laying out the rules with respect to an employer’s requirement to pay overtime, covers certain kinds of large and small businesses.
Cincinnati employment lawyers know if an employer is covered by the Act, they are required to pay overtime to all eligible employees, unless they fall under very specific exceptions, such as certain “white collar” workers, including some executives, professional employees, and independent contractors.
Avoid Discriminating Against Your Employees
If employees believe they have experienced any level of discrimination in the workplace, there is a chance the employer will be sued. Such litigation is not only costly, but extremely time consuming. To avoid charges of discrimination, employers must assiduously avoid discriminating against employees on the basis of age, race and gender, and other protected classes.
Employers with 15 or more employees are subject to the provisions contained in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which is the primary federal law prohibiting employment discrimination. In addition, employers who have as few as four employees will be subject to Ohio’s own anti-discrimination laws.
Steer Clear Of Unnecessary Rules
Most employers expect their employees to behave a certain way while in the workplace. There’s nothing wrong with expecting employees to conduct themselves as professionals while on the premises. However, some lines may be crossed when employers expect their employees to have a certain look. Every now and then, there’s a news story about an employer who fired someone because she had braided hair or wore a head scarf while at work. Because employees may sometimes dress in a particular way because of their religious beliefs, it would be wise for employers to avoid establishing rules viewed as discriminatory by some if there is no particular safety or compelling business justification for the rule.