2020 Labor & Wage Compliance Round-Up

A summary of wage and compliance legislation that impacts you and your team
Just a few things happened in 2020 – an election, a pandemic, an economic shut down. Believe it or not, the world is still spinning, and we are still building features in HotSchedules to help you manage your workforce. We covered a lot of ground in the area of wage and scheduling compliance this year. Read on to learn about new regulations introduced this year and how we can help you navigate them.

Wage and hour disputes have been rising for several years. The city of Seattle has increased employee payouts over wage and scheduling disputes from $26,000 in 2014 to almost $4 million in 2020. These lawsuits are typically the result of paying below minimum wage, tip payout discrepancies, and not reporting overtime. As the laws get more complicated and more varied from market-to-market, we don’t expect them to slow down anytime soon.

Through many years of exciting growth we have continued the mission of creating solutions that address the industry’s most complex challenges around inventory, task management, analytics and HR & payroll services.

Wage Compliance Requirement

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Minimum Wage Changes

Throughout 2020, 26 states and cities raised their minimum wage rates, leaving only 17 with the federal rate of $7.25 an hour. We can expect even more minimum wage changes in 2021.
How HotSchedules Helps
Working with labor compliance experts, we ensure that all wage rate changes are reflected in our software.

Managers receive an alert when an employee’s wage is below the minimum and automatically increases their rate when a tip shortfall is recognized.

We also include effective dates for employee wage to ensure that employees are paid correctly based on the current AND future minimum wage rate.

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Tipped Employees

Nothing complicates payroll more than tipped employees and tip legislation. Tip credits are allowed in all but six US states meaning, tips can be applied to reach the required minimum wage. Alternatively, if their tips do not get them to the required minimum wage, employers are required to pay a tip shortfall.
How HotSchedules Helps
HotSchedules also helps you avoid sub-minimum wage payouts with calculations for tipped and non-tipped employees and tip shortfall warnings
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Paid Sick Leave

Currently 17 states and 19 Cities require paid sick leave. Five new ones were added in 2020.
How HotSchedules Helps
If you operate in a city or state with a paid time off mandate, we recommend you add the Paid Time Off feature to your HotSchedules account. This will ensure that sick leave requests override any cut-off limits and blocked days that are set in the system as a response to standard requests. Paid Time Off can easily be exported via an API and passed on to a payroll vendor.
Scheduling compliance violations also carry hefty penalties. Missed meals and breaks, changes to the schedule after it is posted – they all carry different penalty pay depending on the markets you operate in. To get a complete overview of HotSchedules Predictive Scheduling or Fair Work Week compliance capabilities, check out this helpful video here.

Scheduling Compliance Requirement


Fair Work Week

Chicago Fair Work Week went into effect on July 1, 2020. Generally, the law seeks to give employees advanced notice of their schedules, offer the right to rest in between shifts, require additional pay to employees and potentially levy penalties to employers who do not comply.
How HotSchedules Helps
HotSchedules supports Fair Work Week provisions and simplifies the process for managers to create compliant schedules. Unique to Chicago, employees who are victims of domestic violence can request to hide their schedule from co-workers. Their scheduled shift will not appear on either the home page schedule or the mobile roster.

Meals and Breaks

Managers build schedules with the best intentions with meals and breaks planned out in advance. But shifts happen, right? People get busy, and breaks get missed. Employees ask for schedule changes – even in cities where changes to the schedule are regulated.
How HotSchedules Helps
Time and Attendance customers also benefit from our attestation feature. When employees make voluntary changes to the schedule or knowingly miss meals and breaks, your team members can document that in our time and attendance application eliminating the penalty pay to employees that might have accompanied that change.

FFCRA – Families First Coronavirus Response Act

The FFCRA effective from April 1, 2020-December 31, 2020 provides paid leave to employees missing work due to COVID-19 required quarantine, to care for family members or because school/daycare is closed. Pay ranges from 2 weeks to 12 depending on the qualifying reasons. These wages are credited back 100% to the employer through a payroll tax credit.
How HotSchedules Helps
Payroll Services customers have full access to the calculation of FFCRA payments and immediate credit of the payroll taxes each pay day. If this Act is extended into 2021, we have your employees covered.
From payroll services to workforce management technology, we have you covered when it comes to compliance. For a comprehensive guide to our scheduling and wage compliance features, check out our Labor Compliance ebook. If you would like to learn more about how our HR and Payroll services can help lower your administrative burden and potentially save money in 2021, download this guide.

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