NH labor laws: Big debates for 2019

Dec 24, 2018

BY: Citizens Count

New Hampshire state laws regulate many aspects of the relationship between employers and employees. Those regulations cover everything from discrimination to how employers must accommodate breastfeeding mothers.

Here are some of the most commonly applied labor laws in New Hampshire:

  • Employers must provide employees written notice of pay at the time of hire and whenever pay rates change. (RSA 275:49)
  • Employers may not require employees to work five consecutive hours without giving a half-hour (unpaid) break. (RSA 275:30-a)
  • If an employer asks an employee to work, he or she must pay the employee for at least two hours of work, with some exceptions for specific occupations. (RSA 275:43-a)
  • An employer must provide an employee access to his or her personnel file, and an employee disagrees with something in the file, the employee can include a written statement and supporting documents in the file. (RSA 275:56)
  • Employers must keep accurate records of all hours worked by each employee, going back three years. (RSA 275:49)
  • Employers generally must have workers' compensation insurance, which pays for employees injured on the job. (RSA 281-A)
  • Employers must maintain safe (RSA 277:11) and sanitary (RSA 277:10) work environments.
  • Employers may not retaliate against employees who report labor law violations (whistleblower protection). (RSA 275-E:2)
  • Employers may not require employees to share access to personal social media accounts. (RSA 275:74)
  • Employees must be at least sixteen years-old, with some exceptions (for example when working for parents). (RSA 276-A:4)
  • Employers cannot treat or pay employees differently based on sex (RSA 275:37); sexual orientation; gender identity; age; race, color, or nationality; religion; marital status; physical or mental disability; status as a smoker at home (RSA 275:37-a); or status as a survivor of domestic violence, harassment, sexual assault, or stalking (RSA 275:71)

Click here to see all the labor laws in New Hampshire

Here are some of the areas of labor law up for debate in the 2019 New Hampshire Legislature.

Minimum wage

New Hampshire currently uses the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. Legislators are proposing several options to raise New Hampshire’s wage in 2019.

Visit our Minimum Wage issue page to learn more

Family and medical leave

Some states require employers to participate in family and medical leave insurance programs. New Hampshire will consider competing family and medical leave proposals in 2019.

Visit our Family and Medical Leave issue page to learn more

Privacy for prospective employees

Legislators are sponsoring 2019 bills that would limit the ability of employers to ask applicants about criminal history, credit history, and salary history. Legislators have considered similar bills in the past, but none have passed.

Pay for unused vacation time

Rep. Michael Cahill is sponsoring a 2019 bill that would require pay for earned but unused vacation time. He sponsored a similar bill in 2018 that did not succeed.

Advance notice of work schedules

Another 2019 bill would require employers to give employees adequate advance notice of work schedules. The New Hampshire Senate killed a similar bill in 2018.

Is there an area of labor law you think New Hampshire should update? Share your opinion in the comments below.

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