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Labor Law Basics

If you’ve just gotten a new job, or want to know more about certain labor law changes happening at your present job, it’s a good idea to know a few basic facts about labor laws, so that you know what you’re rights are, and what types of services you’re entitled to. Here are a couple of regulations you may want to keep in mind.

Even before you get the job, you should be aware of what questions your possible future employer should and shouldn’t be asking during the interview. For instance, employers should not ask you questions about your religion, whether or not you have a disability, or if you are a member of a union. 

Once you’re hired, it’s be a good idea to look through the employee’s manual you receive when you’re first hired, since this booklet will highlight some key points about labor laws that your boss may not go over with you. You employee manual or handbook should give you clear instructions on how to handle legal issues within the company, as well as information on firing, hiring, worker’s compensation, and ways to handle sexual harassment.

Should you have any additional questions about how much time you can take off for personal or family matters, health and safety regulations for your workplace, or questions about age/racial discrimination or working with a disability, you can download copies of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Occupational Safety and Health Act, or the Family and Medical Leave Act online. These laws contain details on how much time you’re allowed off to tend to family matters, what to do if you feel you are being discriminated against in the workplace, and what provisions should be made for you in the workplace if you have a disability.  For more information on specific company policies, be sure to set up a time to speak to your boss or supervisor.