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Federal Labor Laws (2019 Updates)

The end of the year is here and for those of you trying to play catch up with compliance, we’ve compiled a complete list of all Federal Labor Law updates for 2019. 

Law Training for Employees and Supervisors

We make sure catching up is never on your to-do list. tryHRIS’s membership includes the Regulatory Compliance Database, which alerts you when Federal & State laws, regulations or requirements change, keeping you informed.

Employment Law Updates (Highlights of 2019)

Employment law saw so many changes in 2019, here are a few of the highlights to take a closer look at. 

Final 2020 W-4 Released

On December 5, 2019, the Internal Revenue Service released a final Form W-4 for use in 2020. Employees complete the Form W-4 so that their employers can withhold the correct federal tax from their paycheck. A significant change for the 2020 form is that it does not have withholding allowances because employees may no longer claim personal exemptions or dependency exemptions. Previously, the value of a withholding allowance was tied to the amount of the personal exemption.

Read what this means for employers and download the final W-4 2020 Form.

IRS Draft Forms

In November and December 2019, the Internal Revenue Service released the following draft tax forms for 2019:

    • ●  Form 1095-B, Health Coverage.

    • ●  Inst 1094-C and 1095-C, Instructions for Forms 1094-C and 1095-C.

    • ●  Form 1095-C, Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage.

    • ●  Inst 1094-B and 1095-B, Instructions for Forms 1094-B and 1095-B.

      These are early release drafts of IRS tax forms, instructions, and publications that the IRS provides to the public. These draft forms may not be filed or relied upon for filing. Although the IRS generally does not release draft forms until it believes it has incorporated all changes, sometimes unexpected issues arise or legislation is passed, requiring modifications. In addition, forms generally are subject to the U.S. Office of Management and Budget’s approval before their official release, and drafts of instructions and publications usually have some changes before their final release. These early release drafts are on the IRS draft tax forms page and may remain there even after the finals are posted on the IRS final release forms page.

      See the IRS draft tax forms page and final release forms page.

Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Requirements

16 States and Districts have now required or have made official comments regarding required Harassment Training. 

Sexual & Discrimination Harassment Prevention Requirements continue to sweep the nation in 2020, heres the list of 2019’s States and their specific requirements

AB5 California Compliance - An Assembly Bill to Watch in 2020.

In September 2019, California passed an unprecedented bill that defines employee classification on a new level, complete with fines for misclassification. Though this is specific to California, Assembly Bill 5 is likely to continue legislation in additional states and is certainly one to watch in the coming year.

Read what AB5 Compliance means for Employers in California and how it will affect you if the Bill passes in your state. 

National Safety Council and Cannabis Impairment Statement Issued

On October 22, 2019, the National Safety Council (NSC) released a position/policy statement addressing cannabis impairment in safety sensitive positions and the NSC position that it is unsafe to be under the influence of cannabis while working in a safety sensitive position due to the increased risk of injury or death to the operator and others. Moreover, the NSC believes there is no level of cannabis use that is safe or acceptable for employees who work in safety sensitive positions.

The NSC is “a nonprofit organization with the mission of eliminating preventable deaths at work . . . through leadership, research, education and advocacy.”

Read the statement.

Download the State Marijuana Law Chart for more information about your state’s requirements. 

HIPAA Penalties Updated

On April 30, 2019, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued a Notification of Enforcement Discretion Regarding HIPAA Civil Money Penalties (Document No. 2019-08530) in the Federal Register to inform the public that it will apply a different cumulative annual civil money penalties limit for each of the four penalty tiers in the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act of 2009. The HITECH Act established four categories for HIPAA violations:

  • No Knowledge (of a violation). 
  • Reasonable Cause (was the reason for the violation and not willful neglect).
  • Willful Neglect — Corrected (willful neglect was the cause the violation and it was corrected within 30 days).
  • Willful Neglect — Not Corrected (willful neglect was the cause of the violation and it was not corrected within 30 days — not timely).

The amended penalties are as follows:

  • No Knowledge:
    • Minimum Penalty/Violation: $100
    • Maximum Penalty/Violation: $50,000
    • Annual Limit: $25,000
  • Reasonable Cause:
    • Minimum Penalty/Violation: $1,000
    • Maximum Penalty/Violation: $50,000
    • Annual Limit: $100,000
  • Willful Neglect — Corrected:
    • Minimum Penalty/Violation: $10,000
    • Maximum Penalty/Violation: $50,000
    • Annual Limit: $250,000
  • Willful Neglect — Not Corrected:
    • Minimum Penalty/Violation: $50,000
    • Maximum Penalty/Violation: $50,000
    • Annual Limit: $1,500,000

The penalties became effective April 30, 2019.

Read the Federal Register.

If these law alerts have you a bit overwhelmed and you find you have more questions than answers, our advisors can help your company navigate every new change, requirement, legislation, law and regulation. Give us a call to see how we can help streamline HR for professionals or office managers.

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