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Employment Laws in Florida

Filed under Hiring Workers. Fact checked on May 25, 2012.

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Employers in Florida must conform to these state rules relating to the employment relationship.

Employer means a person employing 15 or more employees for each working day in each of 20 or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year.

Not covered are religious corporations, associations, educational institutions, or societies that limit employment to members or persons who subscribe to their beliefs.

For purposes of the equal pay law, employer means a person who employs two or more employees.

Prohibited Employment Discrimination

Employers may not discriminate against employees or job applicants on the basis of:

  • race
  • color
  • religion
  • sex
  • national origin
  • age
  • handicap
  • marital status

Anti-nepotism policies are permitted.

AIDS. An employer may not discriminate against an employee or job applicant on the basis of knowledge or belief that the individual has taken a human immunodeficiency test or the results or perceived results of such a test, unless the absence of HIV infection is a bona fide occupational qualification of the job in question.

Sickle-cell trait. No employer may discriminate against an employee or job applicant solely because the employee or job applicant has the sickle-cell trait, or require screening or testing for the sickle-cell trait as a condition of employment.

Equal pay. An employer may not discriminate between employees on the basis of sex by paying wages to employees at a rate less than the rate at which the employer pays wages to employees of the opposite sex for equal work on the performance of jobs which require equal skill, effort and responsibility and which are performed under similar working conditions.

Crime victims. Employers with 50 or more employees must permit an employee to take up to three days off from work in any 12-month period if the employee or a family or household member of the employee is the victim of domestic violence. Employers are prohibited from discriminating against an employee for exercising his or her rights under this law.

Military leave. Any person who seeks or holds an employment position may not be denied employment or retention in employment, or any promotion or advantage of employment, because of any obligation as a member of a reserve component of the Armed Forces.

If a member of the National Guard is ordered into state active duty, an employer may not discharge, reprimand, or in any other way penalize the member because of the member's absence by reason of state active duty.

Firearms. Employers may not discharge or discriminate against an employee for exercising his or her right to keep or bear arms or properly exercising the right of self-defense. Employees and applicants may not be discriminated against based on whether they hold or do not hold a license to carry a concealed weapon or based on an agreement that prohibits an employee from keeping a legal firearm locked inside a private motor vehicle in a parking lot when the firearm is kept for lawful purposes.

Employers may not take action against an employee based upon verbal or written statements of any party concerning the possession of a firearm stored inside a private vehicle in a parking lot for lawful purposes.

Recordkeeping/Posting Requirements

Employers must post in a conspicuous place any notice provided by the Florida Commission on Human Relations that are necessary to effectuate the Florida Civil Rights Act.

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