Louisiana HR compliance updates

Louisiana passed two new laws that affect employers in that state:

Wage and occupational information reporting

On June 29, 2021, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed into law HB 459/Act. No 474 relative to the reporting and sharing of occupational and employment information. The Act is effective on August 1, 2021, but permits employers subject to §1531.1 of Title 23 (electronic filing and wage reports) who are already reporting occupational information on a form promulgated by the administrator to continue to do so until January 1, 2023.

Effective January 1, 2023, employers subject to §1531.1 will also be required to report occupational information along with their employer contribution and wage reports. Employers must include the SOC (Standard Occupational Classification) Systems codes or job title for each employee it records and reports to the Louisiana Workforce Commission. Employers will not be penalized, however, for failing to report, or failing to timely report, an employee’s occupational code or job title or their hourly rate of pay. Employers are required to maintain records of each employee’s wages which shall also be reported quarterly to the administrator, along with the information already required to be maintained and reported under current law including the street address of each establishment, branch, outlet, or office of such employer; the nature of the operation; the number of persons employed; and the wages paid at each establishment, branch, outlet, or office.

Background checks in hiring

On June 16, 2021, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed into law HB 707/ Act No. 406 which affects how businesses may use background checks in hiring decisions. For employers who utilize background checks as part of their hiring process, Act. No. 406 prohibits them from considering an arrest record or criminal charge not resulting in conviction revealed in the course of the background investigation in the hiring decision. When considering an applicant’s criminal history, an employer is required to make an individual assessment of whether the applicant’s criminal record has a “direct and adverse relationship with the specific duties of the job” which justifies a refusal to hire. The employer must consider the following criteria in making this individual assessment:

  1. The nature and gravity of the offense or conduct;
  2. The time that has elapsed since the offense, conduct, or conviction; and
  3. The nature of the job sought.

An applicant may request, and if so, an employer shall make available any background check information used during the hiring process.

Disclaimer: The information contained herein is not intended to be construed as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. Employers should closely monitor the rules and regulations specific to their jurisdiction(s) and should seek advice from counsel relative to their rights and responsibilities.

By Megan Butz
General Counsel, HR Compliance, Checkwriters
Megan joined Checkwriters in 2020 and is responsible for reviewing, revising, and implementing internal policies of the company, advising on human resource, employment, and labor matters, and monitoring and publishing state and federal legal updates to the Checkwriters News and Compliance Center for distribution to thousands of clients around the country. Before joining Checkwriters, Megan served as a judicial law clerk for the justices of the Massachusetts Probate and Family Court performing legal research and writing, followed by private practice in Cape Cod.

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