Multiplier Logo
Loading Animation Image

Employment and labor laws in Florida 2024 guide

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

Florida at a Glance

State capital

Tallahassee

Population

21.5 million

State motto

"In God We Trust"

Key industries

Tourism, Agriculture, Aerospace

Major economic hubs

Miami, Tampa, Orlando

Jump to Section

Introduction to employment laws in Florida

Overview

Hiring in Florida involves complying with numerous employment laws. From minimum wage to standards set by the FLSA, understanding these laws is crucial for maintaining HR compliance.

More than that, employers must understand and comply with federal and Florida labor regulations to avoid legal issues and fines. In this guide, we’ll cover everything businesses hiring in Florida need to know.

Employing in Florida: Key employment laws and practices

Standard work hours

Florida follows federal regulations regarding work hours without any specific state laws defining full-time or part-time work. Generally considered full-time employment ranges between 35 and 40 hours per week, although it might vary based on the employer’s discretion or industry-specific standards. Of note, a Florida statute says full-time employment is defined as an employee who has a normal workweek of 25 or more hours. Businesses often provide full-time employees with benefits such as health insurance, paid time off, and retirement plans.

Independent contractors and gig-workers do not have the same protections as full-time employees in Florida. In fact, they do not have certain rights such as claim to minimum wage, overtime pay, several employment benefits, and some anti-discrimination protections.

Minimum wage and overtime

Florida’s minimum wage and overtime regulations are designed to ensure fair compensation for full-time employees. The Florida Minimum Wage Act mandates a minimum wage of $14.00 per hour for non-exempt employees in 2024, which is higher than the federally mandated minimum wage rate. There are scheduled annual increases through 2026, after which the minimum wage will be adjusted for inflation every new year.

Overtime is governed by FLSA rules, which mandate non-exempt employees receive overtime pay at a rate of 1.5 times their regular pay rate for any hours worked beyond 40 in a week. Exempt employees are typically those earning more than $684 per week in Florida and working in executive, administrative, professional, and outside sales positions.

Insurance and benefits

In compliance with federal law, Florida employers must provide certain benefits to their eligible employees, such as social security and unemployment benefits. Although state laws do not mandate providing health insurance, most full-time employment contracts include health insurance benefits.

Employers are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. The Health Insurance Coverage Continuation Act allows eligible employees to continue their coverage for up to 18 months (or up to 29 months in case of disability) with a maximum premium of 115% of the applicable group rate.

Employers in Florida must also comply with federal laws related to Family and Medical Leave (FMLA), which allows eligible employees to take unpaid leave for specific medical reasons and to attend to familial needs.

Benefit

Provider

Eligibility

Social Security benefits

Federal government

All employees

Unemployment benefits

State government

Employees who have lost their jobs for no fault of their own

Workers’ compensation

Employer

All employees

Health insurance

Employer

Decided by the employer and is usually for full-time employees

Family and Medical Leave (FMLA)

Federal government

Employees who have worked for the employer for at least 12 months and for at least 1,250 hours during the past 12 months

Meal and rest periods

Florida employment laws do not mandate specific breaks or meal periods for adults employed in the private sector. However, Florida law does require that minors under the age of 18 be provided an uninterrupted meal or rest period of at least 30 minutes for every four consecutive hours worked.

Employers must adhere to federal guidelines set by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which do not mandate breaks but stipulate that if an employer chooses to provide a break of 20 minutes or less, it must be paid. Meal periods of 30 minutes or more are not required to be paid, so long as the employee is completely relieved of duties.

Anti-discrimination laws

Florida employment laws are stringent when it comes to discrimination in the workplace. The Florida Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, handicap, or marital status on employers with 15 or more employees. Florida law extends protection against discrimination to individuals who have HIV or AIDS or carry the sickle-cell trait.

Under these laws, employers cannot discriminate in any aspect of employment including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, lay-offs, training, and benefits. Any violation of these provisions can lead to severe penalties including compensatory damages and reimbursement of attorney fees for the aggrieved party.

Multiplier makes it easy to manage benefits for Florida employees.

Leave policies

Florida HR compliance mandates several leave types in addition to those mandated by FMLA.

Leave Type

Duration

Compensation

Domestic violence leave

Up to three days

Unpaid

Jury futy leave

Duration of jury duty

Unpaid

Witness leave

Duration of court proceedings

Unpaid

Military leave

Duration of active duty, plus up to one year before discharge

Unpaid

Civil air patrol leave

Up to 15 days a year

Unpaid

Termination laws

Florida is an “at-will” employment state. An employer or employee may terminate the employment relationship at any time and for any reason, so long as it is not discriminatory, illegal, or retaliatory.

While it isn’t mandated by law, it’s common practice for employees to provide two weeks’ notice to the employer when resigning from their position.

Florida does not have a law governing when final wages are due to a terminated employee. However, it is best practice to pay final wages by the next scheduled pay period. There is also no Florida law requiring employers to provide severance pay.

Easily onboard employees in Florida?

Safety and health

Under OSHA, employers in Florida are responsible for providing a safe workplace. This includes ensuring that work environments are free from recognized hazards that cause or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm. Florida’s Clean Indoor Air Act bans smoking in nearly all indoor workplaces.

Taxes in Florida

Florida does not have state-level income taxes, which simplifies payroll processing for employers. However, employers are responsible for federal payroll taxes, including Federal Income Tax, Social Security tax (6.2% up to $132,900 of wages), and Medicare tax (1.45%). In addition to regular payroll taxes, employers also pay federal and state unemployment taxes.

Tax type

Tax rate

Federal income tax

Varies

State income tax

0%

SDI tax

1.0%

State unemployment tax

0.1%-5.4%

Federal unemployment tax

Up to 6%

Social Security

6.2% (employer and employee each)

Medicare

1.45% (employer and employee each)

Managing Florida employees with an Employer of Record (EOR)

When hiring in Florida, ensuring compliance doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Multiplier, with its all-in-one global hiring platform, can streamline your HR and compliance processes.

If you’re an organization hiring U.S. talent, our Employer of Record solution can help you hire full-time employees without establishing a local entity.

With Multiplier, you can also use our Global Payroll solution which automatically takes care of taxes, contributions and withholdings while ensuring employees get paid on time. Also, the platform helps you roll out benefits such as insurance coverage, pension plans, and more, ensuring your employees access competitive benefits.

Book a demo today and get to know how Multiplier can simplify HR compliance in Florida.

FAQs

The Florida Civil Rights Act applies to employers with 15 or more employees. This law prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, disability, age, and marital status. Additionally, discrimination against individuals with AIDS/HIV or the sickle-cell trait is also prohibited under Florida law.

As of 2024, the Florida Minimum Wage Act mandates nonexempt employees be paid a minimum wage of $14.00 per hour. As for child labor, Florida restricts the occupations minors may engage in and limits their working hours based on their age.

Employers in Florida may pay wages using cash, check, direct deposit (with written consent from the employee), or payroll debit card. Wage deductions are permissible if the employer receives an income withholding order or writ of garnishment. Furthermore, the Florida Health Insurance Coverage Continuation Act allows eligible employees who work in companies with fewer than 20 employees to elect continued coverage, at a maximum premium rate.

Several laws in Florida mandate required time off and leave of absence for employees. These include domestic violence leave (for companies with 50 or more employees), jury duty leave, witness leave, military leave, and Civil Air Patrol leave (for companies with 15 or more employees).

The Florida Clean Indoor Air Act bans smoking in nearly all indoor workplaces. Additionally, employers generally cannot prevent or limit employees from lawfully possessing a firearm in a privately owned motor vehicle on employer property. Florida also prohibits texting while driving.

Managing employees in Florida?

We can help.

Footer 24x5 New Img2x

Try the best HR ops platform for professional services