Virginia recently passed and signed into law a series of new bills expanding both employee protections and employer liability. Starting on July 1, 2020, Virginia employers will face new legal requirements and an increase in potential liability.



The Virginia Values Act expands the Virginia Human Rights Act (VHRA) to include protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as veteran status. The law also expands the legal rights and remedies available to employees and the scope of employers covered.



Reasonable accommodations for pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions

The Virginia Values Act also amends §§ 2.2-3901 and 2.2-3903 to include greater rights for employees related to pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions.



Worker misclassification

Virginia adopted several bills aimed at preventing and remedying allegations of worker misclassification. These bills includes: Private Right of Action (S.B. 894 and H.B. 984), Anti-retaliation for Reporting (S.B. 662 and H.B. 1199), and Additional Agency Authority (S.B. 744 and H.B. 1407). 

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Wage payment

House Bill 123 creates a private right of action for employees for failure to pay wages under the Virginia Wage Payment Act (VWPA). The bill allows employees to bring an action individually or jointly against an employer in a court of competent jurisdiction. House Bill 622 will prohibit employers from retaliating against an employee for sharing wage information. 

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Non-competition agreements for low-wage workers

Employers are now prohibited from entering, enforcing, or threatening to enforce non-compete covenants with any low-wage employee. 

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Minimum wage increase timeline

Virginia’s minimum wage increase to $9.50 an hour is now delayed until May 1, 2021 due to economic turmoil from Covid-19. The prior date was January 1, 2021.

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 The details included in this blog are meant to serve only as information on new Virginia employment laws, and it is not legal advice or comprehensive of all situations or employment laws. Please refer to the full bills cited and/or reach out to your attorney with any questions or concerns. Follow our blog for updates as our team continues to analyze new legislation and monitor developments.