Tips to Save Businesses Time and Money: Avoiding Labor Law Poster Scams

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In addition to managing the ins and outs of their businesses, companies in California and across the country face the mundane task of keeping up with labor law poster compliance. Employers are required by law to display labor law posters, but knowing whether the posters are authentic and up-to-date is a challenge facing millions of businesses, many of which have lost money to poster scams.

Here's how the con works: A scam artist visits a business posing as a government agent, or unscrupulous firms bombard businesses with deceptive materials that claim every labor law change requires the purchase of a new poster and threaten fines up to $17,000. Business owners are led to believe — often wrongly — that the labor law posters they are displaying are not in compliance with current regulations. The business owner is then strong-armed into paying excessive fees for outdated or unnecessary posters.

Protecting Your Business



Business owners can avoid labor law poster scams by partnering with a qualified poster provider. Legitimate third-party poster sellers offer an easy way to save time, avoid scams, and keep businesses in compliance with current laws. Qualified poster providers employ labor law experts or attorneys to properly interpret and notify business owners only when immediate updates are required.

Before working with a labor law poster provider, businesses should review the following 10 tips to finding a legitimate poster provider:
  1. Check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to verify the seller's quality and service standards.
  2. Thoroughly investigate any business without a BBB rating, as this may indicate an unproven track record.
  3. Choose a partner that understands both state and federal laws.
  4. Confirm that the seller employs labor law attorneys to interpret regulatory changes.
  5. Ask for written assurance that the posters meet exact agency specifications for font size, poster size, color, and layout.
  6. Choose a poster provider that guarantees unlimited protection from fines.
  7. Before purchasing updated posters, verify with the issuing government agency that the update is truly "mandatory."
  8. Be suspicious of misleading poster offers that appear to be from the government.
  9. If you are visited by someone posing as a government agent, ask to see credentials. Never buy posters from a door-to-door salesperson.
  10. Report fraudulent incidents to the state attorney general.
Now, keeping up with labor law poster compliance may not sound so tough, but California businesses have to keep track of 17 federal and state postings issued by six different agencies. In the past two years, California employers were responsible for replacing/updating at least four mandatory postings, and they were affected by at least eight non-mandatory changes.

Businesses are advised against ignoring labor law poster compliance. Not maintaining the right set of posters can open a business up to potential fines and litigation. Labor law posters are usually an inspector's first item on the checklist. A noncompliant poster may result in a fine and sets the tone for the rest of the inspection. In some cases, not having the right posters can extend the statute of limitations and turn a manageable lawsuit into an expensive ordeal.

How does outsourcing work? G.Neil developed its Poster Guard® Compliance Protection product with business owners' input and needs in mind. For a small annual fee, businesses are alerted when any change occurs and are automatically sent updated posters when required. Poster Guard Compliance Protection also guarantees against agency fines, delivers poster updates within 30 days of law changes, and ensures businesses never have to worry about posting compliance again.

In addition, businesses can ensure they are in compliance with all federal and state labor law poster requirements by visiting www.freeposteraudit.com.

About the Author

Ashley Kaplan is the California area expert and compliance attorney for Poster Guard Compliance Protection by G.Neil, the nation's largest provider of human resources products and solutions to help businesses hire, manage, and motivate employees. G.Neil provides labor law posters to more than 275,000 customers representing 53 million employees. A member of the Better Business Bureau, G.Neil, with 20 years experience, is the market leader in HR solutions, from labor law compliance to employee recordkeeping and beyond. For additional information about Poster Guard Compliance Protection, please call 1-800-999-9111 or visit www.gneil.com/pg.
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