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Employment Laws in New Hampshire

Filed under Hiring Workers. Fact checked on January 30, 2013.

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

Employee does not include an individual employed by a parent, spouse or child, or an individual in the domestic service of a person.

Employer does not include an employer with fewer than six persons in its employ or a club that is exclusively social.

Prohibited Employment Discrimination

Unless based on a bona fide occupational qualification, it is an unlawful practice to make employment decisions on the basis of an employee's or job applicant's:

  • age
  • sex
  • race
  • color
  • marital status
  • physical or mental disability
  • religious creed
  • national origin
  • sexual orientation

Reasonable accommodation. Employers are required to make a reasonable accommodation for an employee with a disability if the employee is otherwise qualified to perform the essential functions of a job, provided the accommodation would not pose an undue hardship on the employer.

Nursing mothers. Restricting or limiting the right of a mother to breastfeed her child is discriminatory.

Civil unions. Civil unions between same-sex couples are legally recognized in New Hampshire.

New Hampshire law allows same gender couples to enter into civil unions and have the same rights, responsibilities, and obligations as married couples.

Same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriage is allowed in New Hampshire.

Tobacco use. Employment discrimination on the basis of an individual's use of tobacco products outside the course of employment is also prohibited.

Emergency responders. Firefighters, rescue workers and emergency medical personnel have the right to take leave without pay from a place of employment when mobilized after the governor has declared a state of emergency, unless their employer certifies them as essential to its own emergency relief efforts.

Nurses. Registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and licensed nursing assistants cannot be disciplined or lose any right, benefit or privilege for refusing to work more than 12 consecutive hours, except in certain specified situations.

Noncompete agreements. Employers are required to give copies of noncompete agreements to job applicants either before or while making a job offer in order for the agreements to be enforceable.

Recordkeeping Requirements

Employers may record any data required by state or federal law, rule or regulation provided records are kept for compliance and not used as a subterfuge for discrimination.

Posting Requirements

Employers must post, in a conspicuous place, notices setting forth requirements for compliance with New Hampshire's Law Against Discrimination and other relevant information that the Commission determines necessary to explain the law.

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