The employer-employer relationship is the foundation for any business. A healthy employer-employee relationship can build a successful company as happy employees produce better results – the opposite however can adversely affect the company's operations, morale, and even reputation.

There are federal and state laws that govern this relationship. This may also be governed be an existing employment contract as well as public policy. To build a good employer-employee relationship, here are some rights and laws that should be observed by both parties in order to facilitate harmonious and successful relations:


  • First and foremost, observe the Minimum Wage Law. While the federal minimum wage requirement is $7.50 per hour, as of January 1, 2008 in California, the minimum wage is $8.00 per hour. Take note however, that there are employees who are exempt under this law. The violation of payment of the minimum wage be a valid cause for a wage claim or a lawsuit against the employer.

  • Give proper pay. This means, make sure to properly compensate any work done overtime and be prompt about paying wages. Wages (with some exceptions) should be paid at least twice during each calendar month on the days designated in advance as regular paydays. Overtime pay is equivalent to 1 1/2 times the employee's regular rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of eight hours.

  • Avoid and prevent discrimination in the workplace. There are several federal and state laws that govern employment discrimination. Some of these are:

- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – Under this law, it is illegal to discriminate against an employee on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin or gender.

- Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) – Employees aged 40 years old and above are protected from age discrimination under this law.

- Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) – It is illegal for employers in the private sector, state and local governments to discriminate against a qualified person with disability. Also, ADA provides that reasonable accommodations must be provided by employers to their disabled employees.

- Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 – Employees or job applicants cannot be discriminated on because of their genetic information or any information about that person's family medical history, or any disease, disorder or condition related to it.

  • Keep the workplace safe and free from hazards. Violation of a Cal/OSHA or any occupational safety or health standard or order can give rise not only to administrative penalties but also civil liability if an employee gets hurt or sick.

  • Complaints of employees about discrimination or harassment should be properly and promptly attended to. Do not retaliate against an employee for filing a complaint, even if you feel it is unwarranted.


  • Follow the terms and provisions of your contract. You can be held civilly or even criminally liable if you violate your non-disclosure agreement, a non-compete clause.

  • Read the employment manual to be familiar with the employment policy. Follow the office rules and regulations.

  • As an employee, your employer can be held liable for the consequences of your actions. Therefore, observe the duty of due care and diligence when performing your tasks.

Employees are the heart of every company and so, it is best to maintain and cultivate a good employer-employee relationship because it is mutually beneficial for both parties' success and happiness.