With each new year come new laws that take effect and 2024 is no exception. Below is a summary of some of the new workplace laws slated to go into effect this coming year that are most likely to impact employers and employees.
- Minimum Wage. The minimum wage in Illinois will increase from $13 per hour to $14 per hour. Tipped employees will see the minimum wage increase from $7.80 per hour to $8.40.
In Chicago, the minimum wage is currently $15.80 for employers with 21 or more employees, and $15.00 for employer with between 4 and 20 employees.
The City of Chicago will work on phasing out the subminimum wage for tipped workers by July 2, 2028. The tip credit will be reduced in stages over the next four years. At present, the minimum wage for tipped employees is $9.48 per hour, which applies to employers with at least 21 employees. For employers with between 4 and 20 employees, the minimum wage for tipped employees is $9.00 per hour.
- Paid Leave Benefits. Illinois has enacted the Paid Leave for All Workers Act, which provides employees with up to 40 hours of paid leave for any purpose. Employers cannot require supporting documentation of an employee’s need for leave under this law. The Paid Leave for All Act does not apply in cities and counties with pre-existing leave laws.
The City of Chicago recently passed the Chicago Paid Leave and Paid Sick and Safe Leave Ordinance. The new Ordinance replaces Chicago’s prior sick leave ordinance and requires that employees earn up to 40 hours of paid leave for any purpose each year and also earn up to 40 hours of paid sick and safe leave each year. The new ordinance is one of the most generous in the United States presently.
- Bereavement Leave. The Family Bereavement Leave Act, which became effective in 2022, guarantees 2 weeks, or 10 working days, of unpaid leave following the death of a family member. Beginning January 1, 2024, the Child Extended Bereavement Act guarantees additional weeks of bereavement leave to employees who lose a child to homicide or suicide. An employer with 250 or more full-time employees must provide 12 weeks of unpaid leave. An employer with between 50 and 250 full-time employees must provide 6 weeks of unpaid leave.
Apart from the death of a family member, leave may also be taken under this act for the following reasons:
- A miscarriage,
- An unsuccessful round of intrauterine insemination (IUI),
- An unsuccessful round of any "assisted reproductive technology procedure" like in vitro fertilization (IVF),
- A failed adoption match,
- An adoption that is not finalized because it is contested,
- A failed surrogacy agreement,
- A diagnosis that negatively impacts pregnancy or fertility, or
- A stillbirth.
- Transit Pass Benefits. Employers in certain geographic areas within Illinois, with at least 50 employees, must allow employees to use pre-tax dollars towards the purchase of a transit pass through payroll deductions.
- Pay Data Reporting. Amendments to the Illinois Equal Pay Act will require most Illinois employers with 100 or more employees to report certain demographic and wage data to the State’s Department of Labor (IDOL) by March 23, 2024. The IDOL assigns application due dates. An FAQ page from the IDOL can be found here.
- Worker’s Compensation. Employers face increased risks for failing to carry worker’s compensation insurance, which has been expanded to include revocation of business license and fines.
- Illinois Gender Violence Act. Previously, claims for violations of the Illinois Gender Violence Act could only be brought against individual perpetrators, but as of January 1, 2024, claimants may also bring actions against their employers under limited circumstances. Employees have between 2 and 7 years to file claims against individuals and four years to file claims against an employer.
This post does not include an exhaustive list of every new employment and labor law, but highlights some of the most pertinent laws impacting the workplace. This post is intended to be informative but does not constitute specific legal advice for any individual or employer. In order to ensure compliance, employers should consult a lawyer and perform a review their handbooks, policies, and pay practices.