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Which regulations apply to my business based on number of employees?

Perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of running a small or medium-sized business is making sure that you are in compliance with all of the many federal regulations that apply in your industry.

As your business grows and you hire on more employees, some new regulations may kick in that didn’t apply before. Make sure that you are aware of the thresholds you are crossing by hiring more employees, so that you can avoid the hefty fines and other penalties associated with violation. The following are some of the most important regulations for the owners of a growing small business to know about.

Regulations that apply regardless of your number of employees

There are a few employment regulations that you must follow, even if you only have one employee besides yourself. For example, federal law requires you to pay your employees the same salary for equal work regardless of whether they are male or female.

You will also most likely need to comply with federal minimum wage and overtime laws, unless your business falls under a small category of exempt industries.

Some employee number thresholds

It would be impossible to list every state and federal regulation that could apply to your company, since they vary by industry. However, here are some of the most important ones to keep track of as you hire on more workers.

Once you hit 15 employees, you must ensure that your hiring practices do not discriminate in employment based on federally protected characteristics, such as race, sex and religion.

Your company will also fall under the application of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, a federal statute, when it comes to things such as sexual harassment lawsuits. Before reaching 15 employees, California law will govern such cases.

You have put uncountable hours into building your business up, and the last thing you want is to face a lawsuit or government fine that could set your company back considerably. If you are unsure of whether your compliance with regulations is adequate, it could be a safe bet to consult an experienced business law attorney in order to ensure that you are not inadvertently opening yourself up to liability.