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Virginia Laws

Discover important state and local employment laws for Virginia.
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Published: May 18, 2023

Virginia Further Restricts to Employer Use of SSNs and Certain Employment Agreements

Virginia Further Restricts to Employer Use of SSNs and Certain Employment Agreements
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Update Effective: July 1, 2023

Governor Youngkin has signed HB 1895 into law, which amends Virginia’s existing Nondisclosure Agreement Law to restrict any suspected suppression or concealment of claims of sexual harassment or sexual assault. Nondisclosure, confidentiality, and non-disparagement agreements that denote or exclude these claims for employees or prospective employees will be null and void per this new law.

SB 1040 was also signed into law this winter, which prohibits the use of social security numbers (SSNs) on employee identification badges or cards. Both laws take effect on July 1 of this year. Employers should review any nondisclosure, non-disparagement, and confidentiality agreements and/or employee identification procedures, and update accordingly.

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Published: May 18, 2023

Virginia Organ & Marrow Donation Leave

Virginia Organ & Marrow Donation Leave
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Update Effective: July 1, 2023

Virginia is the latest state to join 19 others in implementing living donor leave laws. Beginning July 1, 2023, Virginia employers with 50 or more employees will be required to allow employees to utilize leave for donation-related purposes in a given 12-month period: 30 business days for bone marrow donation and 60 business days for organ donation. There is no requirement for this leave to be paid by the employer, but employers must continue medical benefits for the duration of the leave and to reinstate the employee to their original position, or similar role with equal pay.

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Published: Apr 14, 2022

Virginia Enforces the Right to Wear or Not Wear a Mask in the Workplace

Virginia Enforces the Right to Wear or Not Wear a Mask in the Workplace
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Update Effective: March 23, 2022

In a repeal of Virginia’s Permanent Standard, the Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board issued guidance to replace the ETS to enforce the right to wear or not wear a mask in non-federally mandated environments, unless required by law or if it is deemed medically appropriate. The guidance states that Virginia Occupational Safety and Health (VOSH) prohibits discrimination based on wearing or not wearing a mask in the workplace.

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Published: Jul 15, 2021

Virginia Broadens Protections Against Disability Discrimination

Virginia Broadens Protections Against Disability Discrimination
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Update Effective: July 1, 2021

The Virginia Human Rights Act (VHRA) now includes protections for employees with disabilities. Employers with more than five employees must include information about an employee’s right to reasonable disability accommodations in their handbooks, among other posting and notification requirements. Employers should consider all applicable federal and state laws to ensure they respond to reasonable accommodations appropriately and in a timely manner and do not take adverse action against employees who request or use reasonable accommodations.

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Published: May 13, 2021

Recreational Marijuana Law

Recreational Marijuana Law
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Update Effective: July 1, 2021

Beginning July 1, marijuana will become legal for adult users (21 and older) in Virginia. The law does not prevent employers from prohibiting possession during work hours or taking adverse action against employees for being impaired at work, though there may be additional considerations for medical marijuana cardholders.

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Published: Apr 14, 2021

Minimum Wage Increase in VA

Minimum Wage Increase in VA
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Update Effective: May 1, 2021

Virginia’s new minimum wage law will gradually raise the state minimum wage beginning on May 1, 2021, with an increase to $9.50 per hour. The new law also modifies state exemption categories and outlines pay requirements for certain employees enrolled in on-the-job training programs. With limited exceptions, employees in Virginia not exempt from minimum wage requirements must be paid at least the hourly minimum wage.

Justworks customers can review minimum wage requirements by visiting the 2021 State and Local Minimum Wages chart via ThinkHR.*

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Published: Feb 11, 2021

Virginia's Permanent Standard in Light of COVID-19

Virginia's Permanent Standard in Light of COVID-19
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Update Effective: January 27, 2021

Last August, we wrote about Virginia’s Emergency Temporary Standard to address COVID-19 in the workplace. Due to the temporary standard’s expiration on January 26, 2021, the Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board enacted a Permanent Standard to supersede the Emergency Temporary Standard with several changes, including relaxed positive reporting requirements and modified return-to-work guidance.

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Published: Jan 14, 2021

Sexual Harassment Prevention Training for Certain Hospitality Industry Workers

Sexual Harassment Prevention Training for Certain Hospitality Industry Workers
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Update Effective: December 3, 2020

A recent amendment to the Tipped Wage Workers Fairness Amendment Act mandates that tipped employees and all managers, owners or operators of businesses that employ tipped employees must receive sexual harassment prevention training. These employers must also impose a sexual harassment prevention policy that includes incident reporting procedures, must provide additional training on the district’s minimum wage law, and must provide copies and certifications, respectively, to the Department of Employment Services (DOES).

The deadline for compliance is currently unknown as we await further guidance from the DOES. Employers should continue to monitor this development.

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Published: Dec 17, 2020

Classification of Employees vs Independent Contractors

Classification of Employees vs Independent Contractors
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Update Effective: January 1, 2021

Effective January 1, 2021, all workers will be presumed to be employees under Virginia labor, unemployment, workers’ compensation, and tax laws unless the employer (or worker, as the case may be) can demonstrate that the worker meets the definition of an independent contractor under Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidelines. The new law also adds statutory penalties for misclassification.

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Published: Aug 13, 2020

Virginia's Pregnancy and Childbirth Accommodations

Virginia's Pregnancy and Childbirth Accommodations
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Update Effective: July 1, 2020 and October 29, 2020

Virginia's Human Rights Act has been amended to require covered employers (generally defined as those with five or more employees) to reasonably accommodate employees as it relates to pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. Employers are required to engage in a good faith, interactive dialogue with employees who request accommodations. The law also includes notice and posting requirements with a compliance deadline of October 29, 2020.

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Published: Aug 13, 2020

Virginia’s New COVID-19 Workplace Safety Rules

Virginia’s New COVID-19 Workplace Safety Rules
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Update Effective: July 27, 2020

Virginia has issued an emergency temporary standard with employer requirements regarding COVID-19 control and prevention in the workplace. These rules apply to employers under the jurisdiction of Virginia’s Occupational Health and Safety Act, with varying degrees of employer requirements depending on exposure risk level. The requirements will remain in effect until six months past the effective date, the expiration of the Governor’s State of Emergency, or it is repealed by the Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board — whichever occurs first, unless it is otherwise made permanent.

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Published: Jun 15, 2020

Virginia Further Defines Racial Discrimination as Prohibited by State Human Rights Law Update

Virginia Further Defines Racial Discrimination as Prohibited by State Human Rights Law Update
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Update Effective: July 1, 2020

As previously covered in The Scoop, Governor Northam signed an amendment to the Virginia Human Rights Act, defining racial discrimination to include traits historically associated with race, such as certain hairstyles. Virginia joins California, New York, New Jersey and Washington in doing so, when this amendment goes into effect on July 1, 2020.

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This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, legal or tax advice. If you have any legal or tax questions regarding this content or related issues, then you should consult with your professional legal or tax advisor.
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