Employer's News and Information

Montgomery County Public Health Emergency Grant (PHEG) Program Website Launched.  Montgomery County has launched a website for its Public Health Emergency Grant (PHEG)  program designed to benefit for-profit and nonprofit businesses  with 100 employees or fewer. The website provides information for businesses to prepare their grant applications.  Read Press Release Here.


Maryland Department of Labor | Unemployment Filing Information

New BEACON One-Stop Online Application Available Friday, April 24

The Maryland Department of Labor has launched a new unemployment insurance application called the Beacon One-Stop . This new application will allow all Marylanders to file all types of claims entirely online! This includes those who are eligible for regular benefits, CARES Act benefits, and individuals who were previously required to file by phone. To learn how services have been improved and expanded, visit the BEACON One-Stop Overview page.

Access the new BEACON One-Stop Application through the Maryland Department of Labor website.

Montgomery County Code, Chapter 27, Article 1

The Montgomery County Compliance Section is the civil rights enforcement operation of the Office of Human Rights. It has jurisdiction over private employers in Montgomery County (including the Montgomery County Government), real estate transactions (both housing and commercial real estate), and places of public accommodation. The Compliance Section receives, investigates and resolves formal complaints of discrimination. The Compliance Section specifically enforces Montgomery County Code, Chapter 27, Article 1.

Earned Sick and Safe Leave Law

What You Need to Know About Montgomery County's New "Earned Sick and Safe Leave Law"
Review the  new law and a copy of the signed legislation . If you have additional questions or need further information please call 240-777-8490 or email [email protected]

Montgomery County’s new Earned Sick and Safe Law went into effect on Oct.1, 2016. It will require most employers in the County to provide earned sick and safe leave to employees for work performed in the County.

The intent of the law is to provide employees with paid leave or time off to take care of things such as sickness, family illnesses or domestic violence. It helps to ensure that workers do not have to make a choice between keeping a job and going to work sick or not being able to have time to find a safe living environment. The bill is expected to provide support to our lowest income and most vulnerable workers. 

The legislation requires employers to provide earned sick and safe leave at a rate of at least one hour for every 30 hours an employee works in the County up to 56 hours in a calendar year. To help small businesses, an employer with fewer than five employees would have to provide an employee with up to 32 hours of paid sick and safe leave per year plus an additional 24 hours of unpaid sick and safe leave. Many County employers already meet or exceed the benefits required by the new law and are unaffected by the new law.

Employers are required to give employees written notice that they are entitled to earned sick and safe leave under the new law. The notice must include a statement of how sick and safe leave is accrued, the permitted uses of earned sick and safe leave, a statement that the employer must not retaliate against an employee for exercising the rights established by the law.

Sick & Safe Leave Guidance for Employers with Workers in Montgomery County

As of February 11, 2018, employers with workers in Montgomery County must be aware of both state and local laws pertaining to Sick and Safe leave for their employees. The State law does not preempt the County law, except where the State law provides for sick and safe leave benefits that are more generous than the local law. This document is intended to help employers understand which provisions of the law apply to employees working in Montgomery County. Ultimately, however, it is incumbent on employers to have a full understanding of both laws so that they understand which provisions apply to them specifically.

Montgomery County Code Chapter 27, Article XIII
Maryland Healthy Working Families Act

Throughout this document, text that is highlighted in red indicates provisions of the Maryland Healthy Working Families Act that are more generous than those in the Montgomery County Sick & Safe Leave Law.

Minimum Wage Information

Most employees must be paid the Montgomery Co. Minimum Wage Rate. Employees age 18 and under working under 20 hours per week are exempt from this rate.
Tipped Employees (earning more than $30 per month in tips): must earn the Montgomery Co. Minimum Wage Rate per hour. Employers must pay at least $4.00 per hour. This amount plus tips must equal at least the Montgomery Co. Minimum Wage Rate.

Amusement and Recreational Establishments (who meet certain requirements): must pay employees at least 85% of the State Minimum Wage Rate.
Employees under 20 years of age: must earn at least 85% of the State Minimum Wage Rate for the first 6 months of employment.

Online Form Available for Employers Required to File Minimum Wage Report for Tipped Employees

The Montgomery County Office of Human Rights has announced an  online form is available for all employers who are required to file quarterly wage reports for tipped employees.

Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and County Council passed  Montgomery County Code, Chapter 27-Human Rights and Civil Liberties, Section 27-69 to establish a base pay for tipped employees in 2015. The law requires that each qualifying tipped employee is paid the minimum Tipped Credit Wage of $4 an hour and must be paid an additional amount to equal, in total, the current minimum wage during each quarter. Employers are required to file awage report within 30 days after the end of each quarter.

“We want to make it as easy as possible for employers to comply with the requirements,” said Office of Human Rights Director Jim Stowe. “This new online process will provide a more effective and efficient process for filing.”

More information is available on Montgomery County’s minimum wage and overtime law https://www.dllr.state.md.us/labor/wages/minimumwagelawmont.pdf

Employment Guide for Domestic Workers

Are you a domestic worker? Domestic workers are people who work in a private home at jobs like cleaning, cooking, laundry, caring for a child, or caring for someone who is sick or elderly. Outside the house, they may do gardening or driving. If you do any of these things on a regular basis, you are a domestic worker.  If so,  this brochure is for you . This brochure was written to help domestic  workers like you know your rights. Whether or not you have legal immigration status, almost all of the laws that protect workers in Maryland apply to you.

Find more information from the following link(s):

Domestic Workers Law

The  Domestic Workers Law  was the result  of a three year campaign by domestic workers and advocacy groups to help improve the working conditions for domestic  workers.  The law requires employers of  certain domestic workers to negotiate and  offer a written contract that discloses specific information regarding job conditions  and benefits.  The law also prohibits retaliation against a domestic worker who requests a written contract, attempts to enforce the terms of a contract, or files a complaint or participates in an investigation of a complaint.  Council members George Leventhal and  Marc Elrich were the primary sponsors of this bill which was passed unanimously by the Council and signed by County Executive Ike Leggett.

"This legislation was intended to level the playing field between domestic workers and their employers," states Eric Friedman, Director, OCP. "The model employment contract ensures that domestic workers and employers discuss their expectations in critical areas such as wages, job duties, work schedules and employment benefits.  By formalizing the relationship, each party should have a clear understanding of their responsibilities."

Montgomery County Office of Consumer Protection enforces the law and publishes a model employment contract and a model disclosure statement that employers can use to comply with this law.  The contract and disclosure statement are available in English, French, and Spanish.

Ban the Box

Ban the Box, or the Fair Criminal Record Screening Standards Law , assists in the successful reintegration into the workforce people with criminal records by removing improper barriers to employment. The law helps to make sure that employers make hiring decisions based on relevant work qualifications without improperly considering a person’s criminal record. The law does this by restricting when during the application process an employer can inquire about someone’s criminal history.


Age Discrimination in the Workplace

Recently, the Office of Human Rights  released an article on age discrimination  in the workplace that all employers should read. The County established the OHR to help educate and promote compliance with human rights laws, provide technical assistance to the residents and the marketplace and provides mediation and conciliation services. Here in Montgomery County, a growing number of workers especially those who are 40 or older say there’s plenty of age discrimination in the workplace. They trade stories of both subtle and overt acts of discrimination that lead to frustration and desperation. The negative effects of age discrimination don’t stop there. They also impact employers and our community overall. Age Discrimination Fact Sheet. Read Article Here .

Employment News

Raising the Minimum WageRaising the Minimum Wage.  Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett was joined (seated at the table) by Council President Roger Berliner, Casa de Maryland’s Gustavo Torres, and Councilmember Marc Elrich, with other members of the Council and guests looking on, as he signed into law a bill passed the week of November 25th, 2017 by the County Council that would raise the minimum wage to $15 over the next several years.

Minimum Wage Increase  Effective July 1, 2019, please be advised that the minimum wage rate for Montgomery County will increase to  $13.00 for employers with 51 or more employees and $12.50 for employers with 50 or fewer eployees.) Most employees must be paid the Montgomery Co. Minimum Wage Rate. Employees age 18 and under working under 20 hours per week are exempt from this rate.  See Minimum Wage Transition Table.