State Employment Regulation Spherical-Up: 2020

Thursday 17th December 2020

In Part 1 of our Year-End State Law Summary, we covered national minimum wage developments and developments in states at the beginning of the alphabet: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, and Hawaii. In the second part below, we look at developments in the rest of the states (and locations) from Illinois to Washington DC


  • Illinois employers have until December 31st the required annual training against harassment to their employees. You can find essential educational materials on the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) website.
  • employer first annual report to the Illinois Department of Human Rights for information about negative judgments or administrative decisions regarding sexual harassment claims (i.e., any final and non-appealable judgment finding sexual harassment or unlawful discrimination where the decision is in favor of the employee) was due 31. October 2020. From 2021 and thereafter, this report ends on July 1st of each year. Further information can be found in the IDHR FAQ.
  • As we have already reported here, it was from August 1, 2020 Changes to Illinois School Conference and Activity Vacation Requirements came into force. The amended law provides that leave can be used for school conferences, behavioral meetings, or academic meetings, and prohibits employers from terminating an employee’s contract solely for absenteeism for any of these reasons.
  • The Chicago Fair Workweek Regulation came into force on July 1, 2020 and affects employers who have at least 100 employees worldwide (250 employees and 30 locations for a restaurant) and are active in the building technology, healthcare, hotels, manufacturing, restaurants, retail and warehouse services industries. Insured employees are those who earn less than $ 26 / hour or $ 50,000 / year. Insured employers are obliged to inform insured employees about their work schedule in advance (10 days from July 1, 2020 and 14 days from July 1, 2022). the right to refuse previously unscheduled lessons; Premium payment for certain shift changes; and the right to refuse working hours that would occur within 10 hours of the end of their previous shift.

Waterloo, Iowa:

joins the growing number of states and cities Restrictions for “Ban the Box”Prohibition of employers with at least 15 employees from inquiring in any way about the criminal record of an applicant before submitting a conditional job offer, unless the applicant has voluntarily disclosed the previous history prior to an offer. Employers are also prohibited from making an employment decision based on: arrests or pending criminal charges; and beliefs that have been erased, erased, pardoned, or repealed. The Fair Chance Initiative came into force on July 1, 2020.


The Paid Paid Vacation Act comes into force on January 1, 2021. As we previously reported (here), this act allows employers with 25 or more employees (at least 10 of whom are in Maine) to receive up to 40 hours of paid vacation per year that can be used for any reason. Information on this law, including the final rules recently passed, can be found here.


The Paid Sick Leave Act has been amended to add the legal department, guardian or legal department of the employee’s spouse to the definition of family member. These changes took effect on October 1, 2020. Maryland also passed a law prohibiting discrimination based on natural hairstyles effective October 1, 2020. Finally, as of October 1, 2020, employers in Maryland will be banned from soliciting certain salary history information from applicants.


As previously reported, beginning January 1, 2021, eligible employees will be able to take vacation and benefits under the Massachusetts Paid Family and Sick Leave Program. Eligible employees can take up to 12 weeks of paid family leave and up to 20 weeks of paid medical leave in a performance year. Employers should have already submitted the required notices, deducting employee wages to fund contributions, and preparing quarterly wage reports. Please visit the state website for more details and information.

St. Louis, Missouri:

From January 1, 2021, employers with 10 or more employees will be prohibited from basing decisions about hiring or promoting jobs on applicants’ criminal history. Regulation 71074 makes it illegal for an insured employer to base a hiring or promotion decision on an applicant’s criminal history or the associated penalty and to ask applicants or require them to provide details of their criminal history on initial application forms and other information from the employer created forms used in the initial stages of the hiring process. Employers are also prohibited from posting job advertisements, with the exception of applicants based on their criminal history, and including statements that exclude applications based on criminal history in application forms and other forms created by the employer that are used in the recruitment process. Employers are also prohibited from obtaining publicly available information about the criminal history of applicants.

Bernalillo County, New Mexico:

has passed a law on paid sick leave, according to which insured employees can receive up to 56 hours of paid sick leave per year from October 1, 2020. More information about the law, including insurance coverage, can be found here.

new York::

  • New York State has passed a Paid Sick Leave Act Encouraging employers to grant employees sick leave to use for absences resulting from the employee’s illness or the illness, injury or need for medical care of their family member or for reasons related to domestic violence, sexual assault, Surrender to stalking or human trafficking. According to the law, employees started vacation on September 30, 2020 and can start vacation from January 1, 2021. Employees receive one hour of vacation for every 30 hours they work, up to a maximum of 40 or 56 hours per year. depending on the size of the employer. Employers of 1 to 4 employees with net incomes less than $ 1 million must take up to 40 hours of unpaid sick leave each year. Employers with 100 or more employees are required to take 56 hours of paid sick leave and all other employers are required to take up to 40 hours of paid sick leave. Unused sick leave is carried over to the next year. However, employers are not required to pay an employee for accrued, unused NYSSL at the time of termination of employment.
  • New York City has changed its existing sick leave law to pursue the newly enacted state sick leave law. According to the changes, employees who employ between 1 and 99 people can collect and claim up to 40 hours of sick leave per year. If the company has 100 or more employees, employees can earn up to 56 hours and use sick leave each year. If the employer has less than $ 1 million in new income, sick leave will not be paid, otherwise sick leave will be paid. An updated employee notification can be found here.

new York changed his voting rights law (once again). Employees who do not have enough time to vote outside of working hours can take as much time as necessary to vote in public elections. Employers have to pay up to two hours of this time. The employer can decide when the employee can take voting leave. More information can be found here.

In October 2020 Pittsburgh and Allegheny Counties, Pennsylvania Legislation passed prohibiting employers from discriminating against workers based on hairstyles and hair textures related to race (e.g. locomotives, afros, twists, cornrows, braids).


(effective 01.10.20, applies to employers with 15 or more employees) and Virginia (eff. 7/1/20, applies to employers with 5 or more employees) Pregnancy Placement Acts that employers must make reasonable accommodation for an applicant or an employee’s known restrictions on pregnancy, childbirth or related conditions if this is not the case, impose undue hardship on the employer.


also passed a law restricting non-compete obligations. As of July 1, 2020, employers will be prohibited from entering into non-compete obligations with low-wage workers. However, the law does not apply retrospectively. By law, “low wage” employees are those who earn less than $ 1,030 / month or $ 53,000 per year (less than the average weekly wage). Employers must post a copy of the law or an approved executive summary, or face civil penalties.

South carolina

With effect from June 25, 2020, a new Lactation Breaks Act was passed that obliges employers to give employees unpaid breaks (or the opportunity to use paid breaks or meal times) to express breast milk.

Washington, DC::

  • C. Employees can take up to two hours to complete paid free time to vote;; Employers can determine when the employee can take vacation, including by requiring the employee to take vacation during an early voting period. Employees must inform the employer of the need for vacation at least 48 hours in advance.
  • C. has introduced new Anti-harassment training, notification and reporting requirements for employers of employees with tips.
  • C.’s Law on Change of Equity of 2020 Employers who offer parking services to employees (with certain exceptions) must (a) offer those employees an ancillary service for transporting clean air equal to or greater than the market value of the parking service; (b) pay a clean air compliance fee of US $ 100 per month for each employee who are offered parking benefits, (c) no longer offer parking benefits, or (d) develop a compliant plan for managing transport demand. The law also includes a reporting requirement.

© Copyright 2020 Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLPNational Law Review, Volume X, Number 352

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