Important Labor Laws You Should Know When Starting a Business

Whenever you are looking to start a business (doesn’t matter if it is an online or offline venture), it’s always good to get in touch with legal experts or local governing bodies to get an idea of laws and regulations that will affect your business. From advertising and marketing to workplace safety, and finance to intellectual property laws, there are certain rules and regulations that you need to abide by, not to forget the licensing or registrations that you will have to go through before commencing a business.

Business laws can differ from one country to another and one state to another state, so it’s always advisable to do the due diligence and save your business from trouble later on. There are certain laws that affect a specific type of businesses, for example, the food safety laws are devised for businesses dealing in food & beverages, or import and export laws for businesses involved in import and export. But there are some laws that affect almost all businesses, for example income tax laws or labor laws.

Labor laws consist of laws,decrees, rules, and regulations that involve the relation of employees and employers. Some common labor laws include minimum wage, working hours, child labor, worker’s safety, or workers compensation. Let’s have a look at some of these laws. But remember that this post is meant only as an overview, and you must consult with the legal experts and the concerned authorities to be sure of your rights and obligations.

Working Hours:

Its mind boggling to know that working hours were ranging from 10 – 16 hours, and that too for six days a week in the olden days. These days, eight hours a day or 40 – 48 hours a week is pretty much a standard in all developed countries. However, the employees can choose to work for extended hours on their own (in return of overtime compensation). Of course there are exceptions, and you won’t see this law being applied at some places or in certain sectors, still you need to keep your working hours somewhere near to the standard.

Work Health and Safety:

To start with, you need to provide your workers with a safe working environment, to make sure workers are not subjected to injuries or illness due to the working conditions or nature of job. You need to make sure that appropriate safety measures are in place, protective gear is available when needed, and all sorts of safety standards are observed at workplace, plants, warehouse, and transport.

Workers Compensation:

In case a worker suffers a job related injury or illness, the business will have to pay for medical and rehabilitation bills, disability payments, and other benefits depending on the severity of the injury or illness. Again, workers compensation laws will vary from one place to another, so you need to consult with the local experts (e.g. workers compensation Atlanta) instead of relying solely on the online information.

Wages & Overtime Compensation:

Minimum wages rates can range from as high as $20,000+ (per annum) to as low as $800 or lower in developing countries. Minimum wage law means that you cannot hire employees for less than the minimum monthly, hourly, or daily wage set by the government. Similarly certain countries or states make it obligatory for businesses to pay higher rates to employees working overtime.

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