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Employment and labor laws in Connecticut 2024 guide

An employer's guide to labor laws, payroll, benefits, and taxes in Connecticut.

Connecticut at a Glance

State capital

Hartford

Population

3.57 million

State motto

Qui Transtulit Sustinet (He who transplanted still sustains)

Key industries

Finance, Insurance, Real Estate, Health Services, Manufacturing

Major economic hubs

Hartford, New Haven, Stamford

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Introduction to employment laws in Connecticut

Overview

Connecticut is known for its strong labor laws and ranks among the top states in the United States for worker protection and fair employment practices. Understanding and following both federal and Connecticut regulations is crucial to ensuring compliance with these complex labor laws.

Employing in Connecticut: Key employment laws and practices

Standard work hours

Connecticut employment laws provide clear guidelines on work hours for different categories of employees. For full-time employees, most businesses adhere to the standard 40-hour workweek. Regulations on contractual employees vary depending on the contract terms. For self-employed individuals or freelancers, there are no specific governing regulations on work hours – They have the flexibility to set their working hours based on their contracts with clients.

Minimum wage and overtime

Comprehending and complying with wage norms is crucial for businesses in Connecticut. The state’s minimum wage is currently $15.69 per hour, surpassing the federal minimum.

Connecticut law mandates that employers must pay covered employees overtime at a rate of one and a half times the regular rate for all hours worked beyond 40 hours in a workweek. However, certain situations like fluctuating workweeks or piece rates may require modifications in standard overtime calculations.

Insurance and benefits

In Connecticut, employers are obligated to provide certain benefits to their employees. These include unemployment insurance, workers’ compensation, disability insurance, health and dental insurance, retirement plans, social security contributions, and more.

Benefit

Details

Health and dental insurance

Mandatory for businesses with 50 or more full-time employees

Retirement plans

Mandatory for employers with five or more employees earning $5,000 or more in a calendar year

Social Security contributions

Mandatory for all employers

Unemployment insurance

Mandatory for all employers

Workers’ Compensation insurance

Mandatory for all employers

Disability insurance

Mandatory for all employers

Multiplier makes it easy to manage benefits for Connecticut employees.

Leave policies

Organizations in Connecticut provide several types of leave: family and medical leave, paid sick leave, emergency responder leave, military leave, and more.

The Connecticut Family and Medical Leave Act (CTFMLA) mandates that employees are entitled to up to 12 weeks of job-protected leave in a 12-month period for valid reasons, such as childbirth, adoption, severe health conditions, organ donation, and certain military duties.

The state also provides paid family leave benefits, affording partial wage replacement for those taking leave under CTFMLA or for reasons related to domestic violence.

Employers with over 50 employees are required to provide up to 40 hours of paid sick leave per year to certain hourly or nonexempt service workers.

Some employers in the state employing people under service worker classifications must provide paid sick leave benefits a the rate of an hour of paid sick leave for every 40 worked hours.

Sick leave can be used for

  • the employee’s, a spouse’s or a child’s illness, injury or health condition
  • the need for medical diagnosis, care, or treatment
  • the need for preventative care
  • a mental health wellness day for the employee;
  • if the employee is a victim of family violence or sexual assault provided the employee is not the perpetrator

Type of leave

Duration

Eligibility

Paid family and medical leave

Up to 12 weeks in a 12-month period

All employees

Paid family leave

Varies

All employees

Paid sick leave

Up to 40 hours per year

Hourly or nonexempt service workers in companies with over 50 employees

Health and safety

Connecticut prioritizes workplace safety by enacting laws prohibiting smoking in the workplace and prohibiting the use of handheld cell phones while driving. Employers are responsible for enforcing these regulations to foster a safe work environment.

Meal and rest periods

Employers in Connecticut are mandated to provide a 30-minute meal period after an employee has worked for seven and a half consecutive hours. This break should be scheduled sometime after the first two hours of work and before the last two.

However, this rule is not absolute, and exceptions can occur, such as in cases where complying could endanger public safety or in workplaces with fewer than five employees on a certain shift at a single location.

Breastfeeding break is also included in Connecticut employment law. Employers are required to make reasonable efforts to provide such accommodations, ensuring they meet HR compliance requirements in Connecticut.

Easily onboard employees in Connecticut?

Anti-discrimination laws

Connecticut employment laws strictly prohibit discrimination in the workplace. These laws cover various protected characteristics that go beyond federal guidelines.

Under the Connecticut Fair Employment Practices Act (CFEPA), employers cannot discriminate against employees based on race, color, nationality, religion, disability (both physical and mental), genetic information, age, gender (including transgender status and gender identity), sexual orientation, marital status, and status as a victim of domestic violence.

Termination laws

Connecticut employment laws have strict guidelines regarding terminations. Upon termination, employers must pay all outstanding wages within the next business day. If an employee quits, is terminated, or is suspended due to a labor dispute, all due wages must be paid by the next regular payday.

Taxes in Connecticut

In addition to federal and state taxes, employers in Connecticut may be responsible for Social Security and Medicare contributions based on the employee’s salary.

Employers are responsible for withholding these taxes from employee wages and forwarding them to the appropriate tax authority.

Tax Type

Tax Rate

Federal Income Tax

Varies

State Income Tax

4.4%

SDI Tax

1.0%

UI Tax

Varies

ETT

0.1%

Social Security Tax

6.2% (employer and employee each)

Medicare Tax

1.45% (employer and employee each)

Managing Connecticut employees with an Employer of Record (EOR)

Multiplier simplifies the process of hiring in Connecticut and running fully compliant HR operations. If you’re hiring employees in the U.S. from abroad, Multiplier’s Employer of Record (EOR) solution could be of great help. You can employ full-time workers in Connecticut without having to set up local entities.

Running payroll operations in Connecticut is made simple with Multiplier’s payroll platform. With a single interface, you can hire, onboard, pay, and administer benefits to your Connecticut-based employees.

Book a demo today to discover how partnering with Multiplier can simplify your HR operations.

FAQs

Connecticut has comprehensive employment laws that employers must comply with. These include the Connecticut Fair Employment Practices Act (CFEPA), which prohibits discrimination based on various protected characteristics; wage and hour laws that determine minimum wage, overtime pay, meal breaks, and breastfeeding breaks; pay and benefits regulations such as health care continuation and payment of wages; and various leave entitlements including family and medical leave, paid sick leave, pregnancy disability leave, and military leave.

Connecticut permits preemployment drug testing but restricts criminal and credit checks. An employer cannot deny employment or discriminate against an applicant based on a prior arrest, criminal charge, or conviction if the records have been erased. Employers are also generally prohibited from requiring an applicant to consent to a credit report as a condition of employment.

Connecticut law protects employees who report the employer’s violation or suspected violation of the law or who cooperate in an investigation, hearing, or inquiry into alleged legal violations. An employer is prohibited from taking any adverse employment action against such an employee.

Connecticut’s wage and hour laws mandate a minimum wage higher than the federal minimum, currently $15.69 per hour. Employers must pay overtime at one and a half times the regular rate for hours exceeding 40 in a workweek. Laws also stipulate meal and breastfeeding breaks.

Connecticut offers various leave entitlements for employees, including family and medical leave under the Connecticut Family and Medical Leave Act (CTFMLA), paid sick leave for certain hourly or nonexempt service workers, pregnancy disability leave, and military leave. There are also provisions for crime victim leave, domestic violence victim leave, jury duty leave, and emergency responder leave.

In Connecticut, wages are due upon termination of employment on the next business day if an employee is terminated or on the next regular payday if an employee quits or is laid off or suspended due to a labor dispute. Wages owed to a deceased employee must generally be paid to the surviving spouse or conservator of the estate.

Managing employees in Connecticut?

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