New Job in Florida? Know Your Legal Rights Before Your Start

Employees in Florida are protected by law, and employers are not allowed to violate them. The best way to make sure your employer treats you right and to know what to do if you feel your rights have been infringed is to understand employment law.

The three primary protectors

The majority of the workplace rights that employees are entitled to are governed by three key federal legislation:

  1. Employee salaries and overtime hours are primarily governed by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
  2. If an employee needs to leave their job due to specific health-related difficulties temporarily, the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) offers them some safeguards.
  3. To guarantee that workplaces are secure and free from hazards, the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) was created.

Employees are given a range of rights and protections under these three primary federal statutes, as well as other federal laws and state regulations. In Florida, a legal firm such as Colson Hicks Eidson can help you understand your rights before you sign any contract. They can advise you on the terms of the contract, your rights and responsibilities as an employee, and help you resolve any disputes that may arise.

Minimum wage and Overtime pay

The current minimum wage in Florida is $8.65 per hour for most employees. However, some exceptions exist, such as tipped employees who are only required to be paid a minimum of $5.63 per hour. If you are unsure about your minimum wage rate, contact the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity for clarification. If you are paid hourly, you often have the right to overtime pay if you put in more than 40 hours every workweek. A workweek is a string of seven days that your employer designates as such. Any weekday at any time, such as Wednesday at midnight to Tuesday at 11:59 PM, can serve as the start date. You are allowed to work an unlimited amount of hours per workweek. For some jobs, the obligation for overtime pay has exceptions.

Breaks Other than in certain regulated occupations, such as commercial truck driving, employers are not required to give work breaks. In Florida, employers are not required by law to offer paid leave but are required to provide unpaid leave for certain situations, including family and medical leave, domestic violence leave, military leave, and jury duty.

Non-Discrimination and Harassment

Federal and state anti-discrimination statutes shield candidates from discrimination during the hiring process. It is specifically unlawful for an employer to Federal and state anti-discrimination statutes to shield candidates from discrimination during the hiring process. It is unlawful for an employer to treat workers unfairly because of protected qualities including age, handicap, pregnancy, or protected classes like race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. Additionally, it is unlawful for companies to require job seekers to submit to a drug test. In other words, an employer cannot compel a job applicant against their will to submit to a drug test. (Remember, however, that it is acceptable for an employer to make a job offer that depends on a favorable outcome of a drug test. The applicant still has the option to decide whether to take the test in this situation.  The term “harassment” refers to any unwanted remarks or behaviors based on the aforementioned traits that foster a hostile work environment or are a requirement for employment. Harassment is also prohibited. This covers racial, sexual, and other types of discrimination. Your employer is not allowed to take adverse action against you if you report harassment or discrimination.


In conclusion, new employees in Florida need to understand their legal rights before starting a new job. From minimum wage and overtime pay to breaks and non-discrimination and harassment, there is a range of protections in place to ensure employees are treated fairly in the workplace. Familiarizing yourself with the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, and the Occupational Safety and Health Act can help you understand your rights. Additionally, seeking the advice of a legal firm can provide you with a deeper understanding of your rights and responsibilities as an employee. By knowing your legal rights, you can ensure that you are treated fairly and protected in the workplace.