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Employment Laws in Missouri

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

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

For purposes of the equal pay law, employee means a person in receipt of or entitled to compensation for labor performed for an employer.

Employer includes a person employing six or more persons within Missouri or their agent, but not corporations and associations owned and operated by religious or sectarian groups.

For purposes of the equal pay law, employer means a person, firm, corporation, agent, manager, representative, contractor, subcontractor, principal or other person having control or direction of a person employed at any labor, or responsible, directly or indirectly, for the wages of another.

For purposes of the law prohibiting employment discrimination based on an individual's refusal to participate in an abortion, employer means a person with two or more employees in Missouri, as well as the state and its political subdivisions.

Prohibited Employment Discrimination

It is an unlawful employment practice for an employer to refuse to hire an individual based on the individual's:

  • race
  • color
  • religion
  • national origin
  • sex
  • ancestry
  • age (40 or over, but less than 70)
  • disability

Bona fide occupational qualifications. Bona fide occupational qualifications permit discriminatory behavior.

Sex discrimination guidelines. The bona fide occupational qualification exception to the discrimination rules as to sex is strictly and narrowly construed.

Abortion. A separate law makes it unlawful to discriminate against job applicants because of their refusal to participate in an abortion (to perform, assist in, refer for, promote, procure, undergo or counsel a woman to have an abortion that is not necessary to save the life of the mother).

Genetic testing. Employers are prohibited from discriminating against an individual on the basis of genetic information or genetic test results.

Smoking and use of lawful products. Employers may not discriminate in their hiring practices against individual who use lawful alcohol or tobacco products off the employer's premises during nonworking hours unless such use interferes with the duties and performance of the employee, his coworkers, or the overall operation of the employer's business.

Personal identification microchip technology. Employers are prohibited from requiring employees to have personal identification microchip technology implanted.

Recordkeeping Requirements

Any personnel or employment record made or kept by an employer must be preserved for one year from the date the record is made or from the date of the personnel action involved, whichever occurs later. Covered documents include application forms, hiring records, records of promotion, demotion, transfer, layoff, or termination, rates of pay or other terms of compensation and records of selection for training or apprenticeship.

Posting Requirements

Every employer that is covered by the Fair Employment Practices Act must display a poster prepared by the Missouri Commission on Human Rights in a place where other employee notices are posted or in a conspicuous place wither employees will have access to it.

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