G.Neil Says Minimum Wage Increase to Bring New Challenges for Employers

G.Neil, a provider of human resources products, services and solutions that help businesses hire, manage and motivate employees, says that as the new federal minimum wage law works its way through Congress on the way to President George W. Bush’s desk, employers should start preparing now for the consequences. G.Neil says that higher payroll for some, possible employee cutbacks for several and changes in mandatory posting requirements for all.

On January 10, 2006, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed and sent to the Senate a bill that increases the federal minimum wage from the current $5.15 an hour to $7.25, in three steps over 26 months. Numerous interests have urged the Senate to incorporate tax cuts, especially for smaller companies, into the legislation before sending it to President Bush in the next four to six weeks.

Begin Making Your Preparations Now
If the bill is signed into law, employers will have to pay special attention to their mandatory minimum wage postings, say the experts at Sunrise-based G.Neil Corp.

“Employers who don’t post the most recent labor law posters, such as minimum wage, risk government fines and increase the likelihood of employee lawsuits,” says attorney Ashley Kaplan, head of the labor law research team at G.Neil. “Once the new law passes, employers may need both a state and a federal minimum wage poster, depending on what state or states you do business in.”

She notes that in 2006, more than a dozen states increased their minimum wage rates, and another 15 increases are pending.

“So, if your state hasn’t experienced a rate increase recently, it probably will soon,” Kaplan adds. “While we watch what happens with the bill in the Senate, you should prepare to update your federal and perhaps even your state labor law postings.”

How Many New Minimum Wage Posters Will You Need?
If the Senate retains the 26-month phase-in of the new federal minimum wage, employers may have to obtain one, two or three new federal posters, Kaplan notes, depending on the procedural rules of the Department of Labor. Thus, Kaplan says, employers should keep up to date on this topic and have a plan of action for posting compliance, beginning today.

“If you have a proper plan in place, you can keep your labor law posters in compliance, and protect your company from the risk of fines, penalties and even costly lawsuits,” she says.

Sunrise-based G.Neil provides continual labor law posting research, federal and state labor law posters, plus an annual subscription service that guarantees compliance and protection against fines. For more information or to request a catalog, call toll-free 1-800-999-9111 or visit http://www.gneil.com/.

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