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State Employment Law Update, April 2013

Filed under Office & HR.

While changes in federal law grab most of the headlines and the attention, changes that can affect employers are constantly being made on a state level across a wide variety of topics. For busy small business owners, keeping up with these changes can be particularly challenging. Check the state-by-state list below to find out about recent changes in your state laws that may impact you and your business.

Colorado: Effective May 1, 2013, civil unions for same-sex couples are allowed in Colorado.

Mississippi: Local governments are prohibited from imposing mandatory living wage requirements on employers, effective July 1, 2013. Mississippi does not have a state minimum wage—employers and employees are subject to federal minimum wage requirements.

New Mexico: The Fair Pay for Women Act prohibits employers from discriminating between employees on the basis of sex by paying wages to employees at a rate less than that paid to employees of the opposite sex for equal work on jobs that require equal skill, effort and responsibility and that are performed under similar working conditions. Certain exceptions exist. The Act, effective June 14, 2013, also prohibits employers from retaliating against employees for asserting a claim or right under the Act.

Effective June 14, 2013, New Mexico employers are prohibited from requesting or requiring access to a prospective employee's account or profile on a social networking website.

Tennessee: Handgun carry permit holders may store guns in vehicles in employer parking lots. The law goes into effect on July 1, 2013, and certain conditions apply.

Utah: Beginning on May 14, 2013, the Internet Employment Privacy Act prohibits employers from requesting an employee or job applicant to disclose a username and password, or a password that allows access to the employee’s or the applicant’s personal Internet account. In addition, an employer is not permitted to take any adverse action, fail to hire or otherwise penalize an employee or applicant for failure to disclose the information.

Virginia: Effective July 1, 2013, Virginia employers are prohibited from releasing certain personal identifying information for current and former employees to a third party. The personal identifying information includes a home telephone number, mobile telephone number, email address, shift times, or work schedules. Certain exceptions apply.

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