New Wisconsin Employment Law Standardization Act a "Win" for Employers

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On April 16, 2018, Governor Scott Walker signed into law the Employment Law Standardization Act (the "Act"). The Act is designed to promote uniform regulation of labor and employment matters throughout Wisconsin. To accomplish this, the Act prohibits local governmental units from passing ordinances regulating various aspects of the employment relationship.

Under the Act, local governmental units may not enact or enforce ordinances that:

  • Regulate employees' work hours, overtime, or the scheduling of employees' shifts;
  • Require an employer to provide certain employment benefits to employees, require an employer to provide a minimum level of employment benefits to employees, or set terms and conditions of employment benefits that employers may offer to employees (e.g., paid leave ordinances);
  • Prohibit employers from asking prospective employees about their salary history; or
  • Regulate wage claims or wage collections.

Notably, the initial bill introduced in the Assembly contained a provision that would have prohibited local governmental units from enacting or enforcing ordinances regulating employment discrimination. Had this been adopted, local laws such as the Madison Equal Opportunities Ordinance would have been no longer enforceable. This provision, however, was removed during the Assembly's amendments to the bill.

If you have any questions about the Employment Law Standardization Act, and the impact the Act may have on your business, please contact Rob Driscoll or your Reinhart attorney.


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