Changes To The Contract
Changes to an employment contract are generally governed by the contractual terms and common law.
Change In Ownership Of The Business
There are no statutory provisions regarding change in ownership of the business. Contractual provisions and federal law may apply.
Social Security Contributions
Employers and employees are both required by federal law to make social security contributions. Employing units doing business in Kansas are subject to the provisions of the Employment Security Law. However, not all employing units are subject to the taxing provisions of the law. Coverage is determined by the type and nature of the business, the number of workers employed, and the amount of wages paid for services in employment. Employers may also be required to pay for workers’ compensation insurance (Kan. Stat. Ann. §§44-703 et seq., 44-501 et seq.).
Accidents At Work
Employee injuries occurring at work are governed by the Kansas Workers’ Compensation Law (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-501 et seq.). Employers may also be responsible under common law for accidents caused by the acts of their employees where the employees were acting within the scope of their employment. Federal law may also apply.
Discipline And Grievance
A memorandum of agreement between public employers and employees may contain a grievance procedure and may provide for the impartial arbitration of any disputes that arise on the interpretation of the memorandum agreement. Such arbitration shall be advisory or final and binding, as determined by the agreement, and may provide for the use of a fact-finding board. The public employee relations board is authorized to establish rules for procedure of arbitration in the event the agreement has not established such rules. In the absence of arbitrary and capricious rulings by the fact-finding board during arbitration, the decision of that board shall be final. Judicial review shall be in accordance with the act for judicial review and civil enforcement of agency actions (Kan. Stat. Ann. §75-4330).
Class action waivers in arbitration agreements between employers and employees are enforceable. An employer can rescind an employment offer if a prospective employee refuses to sign an arbitration agreement. An employer can fire an at-will employee who refuses to sign an arbitration agreement.
There are no statutory provisions regarding discipline and grievances for private employers. A collective bargaining agreement or other contract may apply.
The Kansas Act Against Discrimination prohibits job discrimination on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, disability, national origin, or ancestry (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-1001 et seq.). The law also bars discrimination based on an employee’s or a prospective employee’s genetic screening or testing information. The law applies to employers of four or more workers and to those acting for an employer or employment agency, labor organization, and the state and its political subdivisions. Non-profit fraternal or social organizations are exempt. Kansas also prohibits job discrimination on the basis of HIV infection (Kan. Stat. Ann. §65-6001 et seq.). The Age Discrimination in Employment Act protects individuals aged 40 or older from discrimination on the basis of their age (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-1111 et seq.). The Kansas Equal Pay Law prohibits employers from paying females a wage rate less than the wage rate paid to male employees who perform the same quantity and quality of the same classification of work (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-1205).
Compulsory Training Obligations
There are no statutory provisions regarding compulsory training obligations.
Employers may deduct from an employee’s wages if (1) the employer is permitted by state or federal law; (2) the deductions are for medical, surgical, or hospital care, do not financially benefit the employer, and are clearly recorded in the employer’s books; (3) the employer has signed authorization from the employee for deductions accruing to the benefit of the employee; or (4) deductions are for contributions to a retirement plan.
Pursuant to a signed, written agreement, an employer may deduct from an employee’s wages to (1) allow the employee to repay a loan or advance from the employer, made to the employee within the scope of employment; (2) recover payroll overpayment; and (3) compensate the employer for the replacement or unpaid cost balance of the employer’s merchandise or uniforms purchased by the employee. Upon written notice and explanation, an employer may deduct from an employee’s final wages to (1) recover the employer’s property provided to the employee in the course of business; (2) allow the employee to repay a loan or advance from the employer, made to the employee within the scope of employment; (3) recover payroll overpayment; and (4) compensate the employer for the replacement or unpaid cost balance of merchandise, uniforms, property, equipment, or other materials the employee intentionally purchased from the employer (Kan. Ann. Stat. §44-319). These deductions cannot reduce an employee’s wages to below the minimum wage required by federal or state law. Deductions from wages for garnishments must also comply with state and federal requirements (Kan. Stat. Ann. §§60-730, 60-734, 60-2310, 60-2310).
Payments For Maternity And Disability Leave
There are no statutory provisions regarding payments for maternity and disability leave.
Kansas employers with gross annual payroll for the preceding calendar year of more than $20,000 must carry workers’ compensation insurance. The Kansas Workers’ Compensation Act does not cover private employers engaged in agricultural pursuits and employments incident thereto (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-505).
Absence For Military Or Public Service Duties
Employees returning from leave must be restored to a position and must have the same status in employment as they would have enjoyed if they had remained in their employment continuously from the time they were called to state duty until the time of restoration to such employment. Any person called to active duty by the state, whether by the Kansas National Guard, Kansas Air National Guard, Kansas State Guard, or other state military force, who gave notice to the employer of the call-up, is entitled to reinstatement upon satisfactory performance of military duty and release from such duty. The individual must report to the place of employment within 72 hours of release from duty or recovery from disease or injury resulting from the duty. If the person is no longer qualified to perform the duties of the position because of disability sustained during the period of state duty but is qualified to perform another job offered by the employer, the person shall be reemployed in a position that will provide like seniority status and pay, or the nearest approximation thereof consistent with the circumstances.
A person restored to employment following state duty is considered to have been on temporary leave of absence and shall be restored without loss of seniority. The person also shall be entitled to participate in any benefits offered by the employer pursuant to established rules and practices relating to employees on leave of absence. An individual restored to employment cannot be discharged without cause within one year after restoration to the position. It is a misdemeanour for an employer to refuse permission to a guard member to attend drill or annual muster or to perform active service when ordered. An employer that refuses leave or discharges or disciplines an employee for being absent in order to perform military duty is subject to a fine of $5 to $50 for each offense (Kan. Stat. Ann. §§48–222 and 48–517). Federal law may also apply.
Employers may not discharge, threaten to discharge, intimidate, or coerce any permanent employee because of an employee’s attendance or scheduled attendance on jury duty. An employee reinstated after jury duty is treated as having been on furlough or leave of absence during the period of jury service. The employee is to be reinstated without loss of seniority and is entitled to participate in insurance or other benefits offered by the employer. An employer who violates the jury leave provisions is liable for damages from any loss of wages and actual damages suffered by the employee. The employer shall be ordered to reinstate the employee and may be enjoined from further violations and ordered to provide appropriate relief (Kan Stat. Ann. §43–173).
Any eligible voter is allowed 2 consecutive hours to vote in all elections while the polls are open. The employer may specify the particular time during the day for voting, but not during any lunch period.
Works Councils or Trade Unions
Kansas employees shall have the right to self-organization, to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing, and to engage in concerted activities, for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection, and such employees shall also have the right to refrain from any or all such activities (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-803).
Public employees shall have the right to form, join and participate in the activities of employee organizations of their own choosing, for the purpose of meeting and conferring with public employers or their designated representatives with respect to grievances and conditions of employment. Public employees also shall have the right to refuse to join or participate in the activities of employee organizations (Kan. Stat. Ann. §75-4324).
Agricultural employees shall have the right to form, join and participate in the activities of employee organizations of their own choosing, for the purpose of meeting and conferring with agricultural employers or their designated representatives with respect to grievances and conditions of employment.
No agricultural employee may be required to join an employee organization as a condition of his employment, and every agricultural employee shall have the right to refuse to join or participate in the activities of employee organizations (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-821). Federal law may also apply.
Employees’ Right To Strike
- Private Sector Labor Relations.
Kansas recognizes the right of employees to strike; however, certain strikes, including recognitional strikes, are illegal. Employers are prohibited from interfering with or impeding or diminishing in any way the right to strike or the right of individuals to work. Further, employers shall not invade unlawfully the right to freedom of speech (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-813). Federal law may also apply.
- Public Sector Labor Relations.
It shall be a prohibited practice for public employees or employee organizations wilfully to engage in a strike (Kan. Stat. Ann. §75-4333).
- Agriculture Labor Relations.
Employees On Strike
Employers are prohibited from interfering with or impeding or diminishing in any way the right to strike or the right of individuals to work. Further, employers shall not invade unlawfully the right to freedom of speech (Kan. Stat. Ann. §44-813).
Employers’ Responsibility For Actions Of Their Employees
Under the doctrine of respondeat superior, an employer may be liable for the negligent acts or omissions by an employee that are committed within the course and scope of employment. Employers may also be liable for negligent hiring and/or retention where the following elements are met: (1) the employer knew or should have known of an employee’s dangerous proclivities; (2) the employee was hired (or retained in employment); (3) the employer’s negligent act or omission was the proximate cause of an injury sustained by the plaintiff at the hands of the employee; and (4) the employee’s misconduct was consistent with the employee’s dangerous proclivity. For this claim, it is not necessary that the offending conduct occur within the course and scope of employment.