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Hiring

Advertising
What are the requirements relating to advertising open positions?

No state-specific regulations related to advertising for open positions exist. The Kansas Human Rights Commission generally advises that advertisements state that the employer is an “equal opportunity employer” and that all qualified applicants are encouraged to apply, regardless of race, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, sex, disability, or age (18 years of age or older).

Background checks

What can employers do with regard to background checks and inquiries?

(a)Criminal records and arrests

Employers may require job applicants to sign a release granting the employer access to the applicant’s criminal history record information—including arrests and convictions—if done to determine the applicant’s fitness for employment. Employers are not liable for employment decisions based on knowledge or information contained in the applicant’s criminal history record if the information that led to the employment decision reasonably bears upon the applicant’s trustworthiness or the safety or wellbeing of employees or customers. These rules apply equally to decisions regarding independent contractors (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 22-4710). 

(b)Medical history

Kansas prohibits employers with four or more employees from seeking to obtain, obtaining, or using genetic screening or testing information of an employee or prospective employee to distinguish between, discriminate against, or restrict any right or benefit otherwise available to an employee or prospective employee. Kansas also prohibits subjecting employees or prospective employees to any genetic screening or test (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1009). Employers may ask applicants to review the job description and ask whether they can perform the job with or without an accommodation, but should not generally inquire into the applicant’s medical history.

(c)Drug screening

Employers may require applicants for safety-sensitive jobs in state government to submit to drug and alcohol testing, but only after a conditional job offer has been made. Test results must be kept confidential. Any advertisements for the safety-sensitive position must include a notice of such testing (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 75-4362). There are no state-specific laws restricting private employers from drug screening applicants.  

(d)Credit checks

Employers may use private investigative agencies to obtain information on applicants for employment purposes. If an applicant is reasonably expected to receive a yearly salary of $20,000 or more, the investigative consumer report may not include:

  • information related to bankruptcies that occurred more than 14 years before the check;
  • information related to suits, judgments, tax liens, or accounts placed for collection; or
  • criminal records more than seven years old.

Employers obtaining investigative consumer reports must clearly and accurately disclose this fact to the subject of the report. This disclosure must be in writing and delivered to the individual no later than three days after the report was requested. Where the subject of the investigation has requested additional information regarding the report, such additional information must be provided no later than five days after the request (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 50-701 et seq.).

(e)Immigration status

Employers that knowingly employ an illegal alien are guilty of a class C misdemeanor (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 21-6509). Employers may refuse to employ a person that has failed to fulfill requirements imposed in the interest of federal or state security pursuant to state or federal law (Kan. Admin. Regs. § 21-31-4). 

(f)Social media

Kansas has no state law on protecting social media passwords in the employment context or on employer monitoring of employee social media accounts. General rules regarding common law privacy serve as the current guidelines.

(g)Other

Not applicable.

Wage and hour

Pay
What are the main sources of wage and hour laws in your state?

The main sources of Kansas wage and hour laws include the Minimum Wage and Maximum Hours Law (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1201, et seq.) and the Kansas Wage Payment Act (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-312, et seq.).

What is the minimum hourly wage?

If an employer is subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act, then the act controls and the minimum wage is $7.25 per hour (29 U.S.C. §206(a)). If an employer is not subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act, then under Kansas minimum wage laws, the minimum hourly wage for employees is either $7.25 or—if the employee customarily receives tips or gratuities (and these tips total at least $20 per month)—$2.13, plus any amount necessary to bring the total, post-tip wage to $7.25 per hour (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1203). By statute, Kansas municipalities and counties are forbidden by from raising the minimum wage beyond the state or federal minimum wage (Kan. Stat. Ann. §12-16,130(a)(3).

If an employer is not subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act and receives a permit from the secretary of human resources, it may hire an employee with a disability or an employee who is a patient at a state institution or hospital at a rate of 85% of the $7.25 per hour minimum wage. An employer may also hire a learner or apprentice at a rate of:

  • 80% of the $7.25 per hour minimum wage for the first month;
  • 90% of the $7.25 per hour minimum wage for the second month; and
  • 100% of the $7.25 per hour minimum wage for the third month and every month thereafter (Kan. Admin. Regs. § 49-31-5).

What are the rules applicable to final pay and deductions from wages?

(a) Final pay

After an employee quits, resigns, or is discharged, the employer must pay the employee’s earned wages on or before the next regular payday (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-315). An employer must make this final payment either:

  • by the regularly used method; or
  • by mail (postmarked no later than the next regular payday) if the employee requests payment by mail (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-315).

(b) Deductions from wages

Employers may withhold, deduct, or divert from an employee’s wages if:

  • required or empowered to do so by state or federal law;
  • the deductions are for medical, surgical, or hospital care or service, without financial benefit to the employer;
  • the employer has a signed authorization from the employee for deductions for a lawful purpose accruing to the benefit of the employee; or
  • the deductions are for contributions attributable to automatic enrollment in a retirement plan (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-319(a)).

Pursuant to a signed written agreement between the employer and employee, employers may withhold, deduct, or divert from an employee’s ordinary wages in order to:

  • allow the employee to repay the employer for loans or advances that the employer made to the employee during the course of, and within the scope of, employment;
  • allow the employer to recover payroll overpayment; and
  • compensate the employer for either replacement costs or unpaid balances due on employer merchandise or uniforms that the employee purchased (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-319(b)).

After providing written notice and explanation to employees, employers may withhold, deduct, or divert from an employee’s final wages in order to:

  • recover property provided to the employee in the course of business (e.g., tools of the trade or profession, personal safety equipment, computers, electronic devices, mobile phones, proprietary information such as client or customer lists and intellectual property, security information, keys or access cards, or materials); however, once the property has been returned to the employer, the withheld wages must be relinquished to the employee;
  • allow the employee to repay the employer for loans or advances that the employer made to the employee during the course of, and within the scope of, employment;
  • allow the employer to recover payroll overpayment; and
  • compensate the employer for either replacement costs or unpaid balances due on employer merchandise, uniforms, company property, equipment, tools of the trade, or other materials intentionally purchased by the employee (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-319(c)).

Employers may not withhold, deduct, or divert from an employee’s wages any amount that would reduce the employee’s wages below the applicable minimum wage or that would be deducted for a reason other than one of the permissible reasons listed above (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-319(a) (e)). 

Hours and overtime
What are the requirements for meal and rest breaks?

Kansas has no specific requirements for either meal or rest breaks.

What are the maximum hour rules?

If an employer is subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act, then the act controls. If an employer is not subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act, then under Kansas maximum hours laws, an employer may not engage an employee for more than 46 hours per week, unless that employer pays time-and-a-half the employee’s regular wages for any hours worked in excess of 46 hours per week (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1204(a)).

How should overtime be calculated?

An employee will receive overtime at time-and-a-half after working more than 46 hours in a working week. In other words, overtime wages must be a minimum of one-and-a-half times (or 150% of) the amount of an employee’s regular hourly pay (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1204(e)). There is no daily overtime requirement.

What exemptions are there from overtime?

Kansas overtime laws exempt motor vehicle salespersons and inmates (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1204(c)). Additionally, different rules apply to:

  • certain employers of emergency medical services attendants;
  • individuals engaged in fire protection or law enforcement; and
  • security personnel at correction facilities.
  • Instead of the 46 hours per week threshold, employers must pay these individuals time-and-a-half for any hours worked in excess of 258 hours within a period of 28 consecutive days. In the case of work tours of more than seven but fewer than 28 consecutive days, employers must calculate the overtime point in proportion to the 258 hour/28 day ratio (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1204(b)).

Record keeping
What payroll and payment records must be maintained?

If an employer is not subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act, then pursuant to the Kansas Minimum Wage and Maximum Hours Law, that employer must keep in its records:

  • employee names;
  • employee occupations;
  • employee pay rates;
  • amounts actually paid to each employee for each pay period;
  • hours actually worked by each employee during each day and each week;
  • start dates and hours of each working week or working period for each employee;
  • pay dates;
  • all wage payments—including any credits or deductions involved in wage computation—for each pay period;
  • employee tips or gratuities, if claimed for credit toward compensation; and
  • any seniority, merit, production, or other differential-based system used to compute differing wage payments for similarly situated employees (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1209; Kan. Admin. Regs. § 49-31-7).

Employers must keep these records for a minimum of three years and must keep them on or about the employment premises. Employers must open these records for the secretary of human services at any reasonable time (Kan. Stat. Ann. § 44-1209).

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