Top 5 Legal Issues in the Workplace

There are many ways to run into legal issues in the workplace. These days, businesses and professional environments are veritable minefields of liability, and even the most vigilant and careful businesses can find themselves in trouble unintentionally. Here are some of the most common ways businesses encounter problems, especially if they don’t follow workplace policy.

Employment Discrimination

Discrimination is a broad term that applies to many different possible interactions and is one of the most common legal issues in the workplace. Discrimination differs from domestic violence in the workplace, hence you should know what to look for. When employers hire unfairly based on race, gender, religion, age or national origin, they open themselves up to liability and potential lawsuits. Additionally, harassment resulting from discrimination based on these traits can induce complicated legal headaches and result in a negative public image.

Worker’s Compensation

When employees become injured on the job, businesses are often responsible and find themselves dealing with the cost of supporting an injured and out of work employee while tip-toeing around the legal intricacies involved. The potential for lawsuits based on negligence is also high.

Copyright and Intellectual Property Issues

Copyright law is complex and rigorously detailed, making it a common place for potential legal issues in the workplace. Many cutting-edge technology companies fall into this trap when developing new products simply out of ignorance. Doing the requisite research should prevent businesses from falling prey to this legal workplace issue.

Product Defects

If a defect is discovered in a product after distribution, businesses may be liable for negligence and other complications, often finding themselves defending class action lawsuits from their disgruntled customers. These legal battles can damage a company financially, but most importantly the reputation lost from negative exposure can be lethal.

Immigration Audits

When a business fails to verify that all of its employees are able to legally work in the U.S., it opens itself up to myriad legal issues in the workplace. By thoroughly and regularly checking the legality of each employee’s documentation, businesses safeguard themselves against surprise immigration checks. If illegal workers are discovered at a company, the resulting fines and legal headaches can cripple a business.

Safe At Work Coalition wants to remind you that these common legal issues in the workplace are only the tip of the iceberg, and the number of ways companies can induce legal troubles are endless. By taking careful precautions and remaining vigilant, companies can avoid simple mistakes and protect themselves from many common legal mishaps.