New Laws Expand Workers’ Rights

An expansion of workers’ rights in the areas of wage and hour and whistleblower protections could mean trouble for Washington area employers who choose to ignore them.

More stringent penalties can now be imposed for employers who miscategorize employees as independent contractors. And new provisions in another law provide more protections to individuals who blow the whistle in the workplace.
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Over the last year, the Labor Department and states have identified more and more instances of employers miscategorizing workers as independent contractors. Most individuals are employees unless they operate their own business using their own tools and set their own schedule. In this tough economy, employers may be tempted to miscategorize an employee as an independent contractor in order to skirt requirements to pay unemployment insurance, Social Security, workers compensation and other employee benefits…

New Laws Expand Workers’ Rights.”  The Washington Post, (April 8, 2012)