Employment Law Labor Laws Science College Notes Tests Exams





Labor Laws / Employment Laws Science College University Notes Tests


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Employment Law covers employees' rights and obligations within the employer-employee relationship


Employment law governs the rights and duties between employers and workers. Also referred to as labor law, these rules are primarily designed to keep workers safe and make sure they are treated fairly, although laws are in place to protect employers’ interests as well. Employment laws are based on federal and state constitutions, legislation, administrative rules, and court opinions. A particular employment relationship may also be governed by contract.

American labor laws trace back to public outcry against the oppressive practices of the industrial revolution. In the early 20th century, the first laws were passed to compensate injured workers, establish a minimum wage, create a standard work week, and outlaw child labor. In the 1960s and ‘70s, Congress acted to prohibit discrimination and unsafe work conditions. Current issues involve employee healthcare and equal pay for men and women.

Many of the employment disputes that result in litigation deal with “wage and hour” violations. Federal law establishes baseline rules with respect to these issues, and then states are free to pass laws providing additional protections. For example, federal law requires a minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. Several states have approved a higher minimum wage, and employers in those states must comply.

Wage and hour laws also regulate overtime pay. The federal government does not place limits on the number of hours adults may work per week, but after 40 hours time and a half must be paid. Rules exist to control the hours and working conditions for workers under age 18, with special provisions for those working in the agricultural sector. In addition, these laws require employers to post notices and keep basic payroll records.

Discrimination in the workplace is another basis for many employment law cases. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and subsequent legislation makes it illegal to treat workers differently based on ethnicity, religious beliefs, gender, age, or disability. Hiring an attorney to pursue a discrimination claim is recommended, as detailed procedures must be followed, such as obtaining a Right-To-Sue letter from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Labor law primarily concerns the rights and responsibilities of unionized employees. Some groups of employees find unions beneficial, since employees have a lot more power when they negotiate as a group rather than individually. Unions can negotiate for better pay, more convenient hours, and increased workplace safety. However, unions do not have limitless power. Leaders must treat all union members fairly and refrain from restricting union members' rights to speech, assembly, and voting powers.

Employers also must follow specific rules when dealing with union members. For example, employers may only negotiate with designated union representatives and must carefully any agreement between the union and the employer.

States are allowed to make their own laws concerning labor relations, but all of these laws must comply with the federal statute, known as the National Labor Relations Act.

Labor law can also refer to the set of standards for working conditions and wage laws. These laws, such as the Fair Labor Standards Act, prohibits child labor, and sets a minimum wage.

Employment law is a broad area encompassing all areas of the employer/employee relationship except the negotiation process covered by labor law and collective bargaining. See, Labor Law & Collective Bargaining and Arbitration. Employment law consists of thousands of Federal and state statutes, administrative regulations, and judicial decisions. Many employment laws (e.g., minimum wage regulations) were enacted as protective labor legislation. Other employment laws take the form of public insurance, such as unemployment compensation.

Specific areas within the broad category of employment law covered under their own topical entries include:

Collective bargaining
Employment discrimination
Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA)
Unemployment compensation
Pensions
Workplace safety
Worker's compensation


Employment law is a broad area encompassing all areas of the employer/employee relationship except the negotiation process covered by labor law and collective bargaining. Employment law is governed by thousands of federal and state statutes, administrative regulations, and judicial decisions. Some of the topics included in employment law include:

Collective Bargaining
Employment Discrimination
Unemployment Compensation
Pensions
Workplace Safety
Worker's Compensation


Labor Laws are a Body of rulings pertaining to working people and their organizations, including trade unions and employee unions, enforced by government agencies. There are two categories of labor laws; collective and individual. Collective labor law involves relationships between the union, the employer and the employee. Individual labor law involves concerns for employees' rights in the workplace. Labor laws first became standard during the Industrial Revolution. Also called employment law.



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