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5 Surprising Things You Didn’t Know about the Posters on the Breakroom Wall
July 29, 2021

Displaying labor law posters at your place of business is mandatory for all U.S. employers. By law, you must post certain information about employees’ legal rights in a place where employees can easily see it – such as a breakroom or commonly used hallway. Neglecting to do so can result in fines and hurt your case in the event of an employee lawsuit.

Hanging a few posters in the lunchroom seems simple enough, but staying in full compliance with labor law posting regulations is more complex than you might think.

Here are five surprising facts you might not know – but should keep in mind – about those breakroom posters.

1. You may be required to display as many as 21 federal and state postings.

In addition to six federal notices, employers are required to display state postings. Depending on your state, you can find yourself searching for space to hang up to 15 additional posters, for a whopping total of 21. And if you have multiple worksites, these postings are required for each location.

2. Your city or county may have mandatory posters.

Just when you think you’ve covered all the bases with federal and state postings, you could be faced with mandatory city and/or county posting regulations. Local governments are increasingly passing employment laws that require separate postings, such as county-level paid sick leave laws or a city-specific minimum wage. It’s your responsibility to know whether these postings apply to your business, and if they do, you must display them.

3. Posting requirements aren’t the same for all types of businesses.

Labor law poster requirements are not equal across all business sectors. If you’re in an industry such as agriculture, transportation, public sector, restaurant or healthcare, you may have even more posting requirements.

4. Postings can be updated at any time.

Many employers believe they only need to update their posters at the start of each year. This is not the case, as labor laws are revised all the time – whether it’s new laws being passed or existing laws being changed. The average number of state posting changes is 150 per year, with at least half of these requiring an immediate poster update. Waiting until January could mean you are out of compliance for several months.

5. Spanish postings may be required, even if you don’t have Spanish-speaking employees.

In 22 states – plus Washington, D.C. – business owners must display certain postings in English and Spanish, even if they have no Spanish-speaking employees. On the federal level, the Family and Medical Leave Act poster must be displayed in both English and Spanish if your business has a significant number of Spanish-speaking workers.

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