Compliance Conundrum: The Difference Between Labor Law Posters and Notices

By Jana Bjorklund, GovDocs Senior Counsel and
Director, Employment Law and Compliance
Published Feb. 6, 2024

GovDocs Senior Counsel and Director of Employment Law and Compliance Jana Bjorklund gives a crash course on the difference between these two very important documents in this first edition of our monthly “Compliance Conundrum” segment.

What’s The Difference Between Labor Law Posters and Notices?

Employers are required to provide employees with information about their rights under certain federal, state, and local employment laws. This information can be communicated through a variety of ways and is usually identified within the statutory requirements. 

Depending on the requirement of the specific law, this is done through either a labor law poster that must be continuously displayed in the workplace (poster) or a notice that must be provided to each employee individually (notice). 

Labor Law Posters 

Posters include mandated employment law information that must be displayed in a conspicuous place in the workplace in an area frequented by all employees. This generally means a physical poster on a wall in the workplace. The location can be an employee cafeteria or breakroom or near an entrance through which employees enter the workplace – essentially anywhere employees regularly frequent during the workday. 

Posters must also be displayed in each workplace. If an employer has a corporate office in one location and six other locations, posters must be displayed in all seven locations – not just at the corporate office. 

At the federal level, employers are generally required to display five posters: 

  • Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) – Minimum Wage 
  • Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) 
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) – Job Safety and Health: It’s the Law! 
  • Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – Know Your Rights: Workplace Discrimination is Illegal 
  • Employee Polygraph Protection Act (EPPA)

There are many more posters required at the state, county, and city level across the country. 

How to Manage Poster Compliance with Remote Workers 

With so many flexible work arrangements for employees, how can employers manage compliance with poster requirements for remote employees?   

Generally, labor law poster requirements do not address compliance for remote workers. However, with the explosion of remote work in the United States during the pandemic, the  for federal employment law posters in Dec. 2020. 

Under this guidance, federal law posters may be delivered electronically to remote work employees when: 

  • All employees work exclusively from home 
  • All employees customarily receive information from the employer electronically  
  • All employees always have access to the electronic poster 

Even with this guidance, electronic posters are not a substitute for physical posters in the workplace, and if the employer has employees working both on-site and remotely, the physical posters are still required but may be supplemented by electronic posters for workers who are working 100% remote. 

If an employee works remote part of the time and is in the office otherwise, the physical poster is generally sufficient for those employees. 

When utilizing electronic posters, employers must take reasonable steps to inform employees how to access the posters and provide information so employees can easily determine which electronic poster is applicable to them and their workplace.

Please note that state and local laws may have differing requirements regarding electronic posters. Employers should be aware of the statutory requirements connected with each poster to maintain compliance. 

There are also posters that must be visible to job applicants. Electronic-only posters are permitted if the company’s hiring process is handled remotely, and applicants are provided access to these posters at all times. 

Employee Notices 

Some employment laws require employers to provide employees with a notice regarding their rights and other detailed information under certain employment laws. 

Notices are specific documents that must be provided to each employee individually. They may be provided as a hard copy or electronically via email if employees customarily receive similar information from the employer electronically. Some notices are also required to be included in the employer’s handbook if the employer maintains a handbook for its employees. 

Notices must be provided to employees in a variety of situations. There are a multitude of notices during the term of employment, many of which are triggered upon hire, when health benefits are offered, when benefit enrollment is completed, and upon certain events during employment. 

Can a Poster Qualify as a Notice? 

Confusingly, employers may comply with some notice requirements to employees by displaying these notices in the same area where posters are displayed in the workplace.  

For example, the federal poster requirement under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Right Act (USERRA) is designed to provide employees with notice of their rights, benefits, and obligations of employees and employers under USERRA. This law provides employers with the option of giving employees notice of their rights by either displaying the poster in the workplace or by distributing a notice to employees directly via email or written documentation. 


Posting requirements vary from law to law and are not consistent. Employers should make sure they know the requirements of each law to ensure compliance. To learn more about poster compliance, check out our labor law poster compliance resources. 

This Employment Law News blog is intended for market awareness only, it is not to be used for legal advice or counsel.

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What is GovDocs?

GovDocs simplifies employment law compliance for large, multi-jurisdiction employers in the U.S. and Canada. The GovDocs software platform integrates three solutions in one convenient place to help you master the employment laws impacting your business. Whether you manage labor law postings, minimum wage or paid leave program, our products cut through research time, provide proactive insights into the everchanging landscape of employment laws and reduce the risk of noncompliance. The company is headquartered in Eagan, Minn.

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The GovDocs Poster Store simplifies posting compliance for employers with less than 30 locations across all industries, offering a variety of posting products to meet your labor law compliance needs.