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FirstStep Poster Advisor

Poster Requirements

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You have indicated that:

  • You want Poster Requirements
  • The nature of your business or organization is: Financial, insurance and real estate
  • The maximum number of employees your business or organization employs or will employ during the calendar year is 1 - 10.
  • Your establishment is located in: Washington, which has its own OSHA state plan.

Based on the information you provided in response to the questions in the Advisor, the following Federal laws which have poster requirements likely apply to your business or organization. Please note the Advisor does not identify all the poster requirements of other Federal agencies but it does include the poster required by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, if applicable.

In addition, certain organizations may be required to display posters that can only be obtained from DOL's Office of Workers' Compensation Programs (OWCP). More information on these posters is available. Links to all Federal employment posters are always available on the Poster Page as are answers to frequently asked questions.

Thank you for using the Department of Labor's FirstStep Poster Advisor. If you need information on state poster requirements, please contact your state labor office or visit the state poster page at business.usa.gov. Also note that some localities have workplace poster requirements, as do some other Federal agencies such as the Department of Housing and Urban Development which requires certain businesses to post its Equal Housing Opportunity poster.

Please visit the FirstStep Employment Law Overview Advisor if you are interested in all the provisions of a particular Federal employment law.


The Employee Polygraph Protection Act (EPPA)

The Employee Polygraph Protection Act of 1988 (EPPA) generally prevents private sector employers from using lie detector tests, either for pre-employment screening or during the course of employment, with certain exceptions.  Employers generally may not require or request any employee or job applicant to take a lie detector test, or discharge, discipline, or discriminate against an employee or job applicant for refusing to take a test or for exercising other rights under the Act.

EPPA excludes Federal, state and local government agencies from the Act's coverage, with respect to public employees.  Lie detector tests may also be administered by the Federal Government to employees of Federal contractors engaged in national security intelligence or counterintelligence functions.

EPPA includes limited exemptions that allow for the administration of polygraph tests (but no other lie detector tests) by private sector employers:

Subject to restrictions, the Act permits polygraph (a type of lie detector) tests to be administered to certain job applicants of security service firms (armored car, alarm, and guard) and of pharmaceutical manufacturers, distributors, and dispensers.

Subject to restrictions, the Act also permits polygraph testing of certain employees of private firms who are reasonably suspected of involvement in a workplace incident (theft, embezzlement, etc.) that resulted in specific economic loss or injury to the employer.

Where polygraph examinations are permitted under the Act, they are subject to strict standards concerning the conduct of the test, including the pre-test, testing, and post-test phases of the examination.

The Wage and Hour Division (WHD) enforces the EPPA.

Poster Requirements

Poster.  Every employer subject to EPPA shall post and keep posted on its premises a notice explaining the Act. The notice must be posted in a prominent and conspicuous place in every establishment of the employer where it can readily be observed by employees and applicants for employment. There is no size requirement for the poster. 

The EPPA poster is available in English(https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/posters/employee-polygraph-protection-act) and Spanish(https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/posters/employee-polygraph-protection-act/espanol). Posting of the EPPA poster in Spanish is optional.

Notices. There are specific notices that must be given to examinees and examiners in instances where polygraph tests are permitted:

When a polygraph test is administered pursuant to the economic loss or injury exemption, the employer is required to provide the examinee with a statement prior to the test, in a language understood by the examinee, which fully explains the specific incident or activity being investigated and the basis for testing particular employees. The statement must contain, at a minimum, the following information:

  • An identification with particulars of the specific economic loss or injury to the business of the employer
  • A description of the employee’s access to the property that is the subject of the investigation
  • A detailed description of the basis of the employer’s reasonable suspicion that the employee was involved in the incident or activity under investigation
  • The signature of a person (other than the polygraph examiner) authorized to legally bind the employer

Every employer who requests an employee or prospective employee to submit to a polygraph examination pursuant to the ongoing investigation, drug manufacturer, or security services EPPA exemptions must provide:

  • Reasonable written notice of the date, time, and place of the examination and the examinee’s right to consult with legal counsel or an employee representative before each phase of the test
  • Written notice of the nature and characteristics of the polygraph instrument and examination
  • Extensive written notice explaining the examinee's rights, including a list of prohibited questions and topics, the examinee's right to terminate the examination, and the examinee's right to file a complaint with the Department of Labor alleging violations of EPPA

Employers must also provide written notice to the examiner identifying the persons to be examined.

DOL Contacts

Wage and Hour Division(https://www.dol.gov/whd/)
Contact WHD(https://webapps.dol.gov/contactwhd/Default.aspx)
Tel: 1-866-4-US-WAGE (1-866-487-9243)*
*If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability, please dial 7-1-1 to access telecommunications relay services.


The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) establishes minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and youth employment standards affecting full-time and part-time workers in the private sector and in Federal, state, and local governments. The FLSA requires employers to pay covered nonexempt employees a minimum wage of not less than $7.25 per hour. For more information, see the Wage and Hour Basic Information Fact Sheet.

An employee may be covered by the FLSA in two ways: "enterprise coverage" and "individual coverage." For more detail on FLSA coverage, see Wage and Hour Division Fact Sheet #14: Coverage Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Wage and Hour Division Fact Sheet #14A; Nonprofit Organizations and the Fair Labor Standards (FLSA).

Special rules apply to state and local government employment involving fire protection and law enforcement activities, volunteer services, and compensatory time off instead of cash overtime pay.

Some employees are exempt from the FLSAs overtime pay requirements or both the minimum wage and overtime pay requirements. Because exemptions are generally narrowly defined under the FLSA, an employer should carefully check the exact terms and conditions of any exemption that may be applicable. Detailed information is available from the local Wage and Hour Division office.

The Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor administers and enforces the FLSA with respect to private employment, state and local government employment, and Federal employees of the Library of Congress, U.S. Postal Service, Postal Rate Commission, and Tennessee Valley Authority. The U.S._Office_of_Personnel_Management administers the provisions of the FLSA with respect to any person employed by a Federal agency.

Poster Requirements

Every employer of employees subject to the FLSAs minimum wage provisions must post, and keep posted, a notice(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/flsa.htm) explaining the Act in a conspicuous place in all of their establishments. Although there is no size requirement for the poster, employees must be able to readily read it. The FLSA poster is also available in Spanish(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/flsaspan.htm), Chinese(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/minwagecn.pdf), Russian(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/FLSAPosterRuss.pdf), Thai,(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/MinWageThai.pdf) Hmong,(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/MinWageHmong.pdf) Vietnamese(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/minwageViet.pdf), and Korean(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/minwageKorean.pdf).  There is no requirement to post the poster in languages other than English(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/flsa.htm).

Covered employers are required to post the general Fair Labor Standards Act poster. However, certain industries have posters designed specifically for them. Employers of Agricultural Employees (PDF)(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/wh1386Agrcltr.pdf) and State & Local Government Employees (PDF)(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/wh1385State.pdf) can either post the general Fair Labor Standards Act poster(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/flsa.htm) or their specific industry poster. There are also posters for American Samoa (PDF)(https://www.dol.gov/whd/minwage/americanSamoa/ASminwagePoster.pdf) and Northern Mariana Islands (PDF)(https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/cnmi.pdf)

Every employer who employs workers with disabilities under special minimum wage certificates is also required to post the Employee Rights for Workers with Disabilities/Special Minimum Wage Poster(https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/posters/section-14c).

DOL Contacts

Wage and Hour Division(https://www.dol.gov/whd/)
Contact WHD(https://webapps.dol.gov/contactwhd/Default.aspx)
Tel: 1-866-4-US-WAGE (1-866-487-9243)*
*If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability, please dial 7-1-1 to access telecommunications relay services.


The Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act

The Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act was enacted to "assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women" by setting and enforcing standards and providing training, outreach, education and compliance assistance. The OSH Act created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) at the Federal level and provided that states could run their own safety and health programs as long as those programs were at least as effective as the Federal program.

Enforcement and administration of the OSH Act in states under Federal jurisdiction is handled primarily by OSHA. Safety and health standards related to field sanitation and certain temporary labor camps in the agriculture industry are enforced by the Wage and Hour Division (WHD) in states under Federal jurisdiction.

You have indicated that your establishment is in Washington, which operates an OSHA-approved State Plan. Please contact the safety and health office in Washington to obtain information on your state's job safety and health standards. State plans may not cover all employers in the state and coverage varies by state. For example, the types of employment that may not be covered under a state plan may include parts of the maritime industry and shipbuilding, or contractors operating on military bases or on other Federally owned land. State plans extend coverage to State and local government employers and employees. In general, employers not covered under the state plan must comply with Federal safety and health requirements.

Poster Requirements

Poster. All covered employers are required to display and keep displayed the OSHA “Job Safety and Health: It’s the Law” poster. Employers in states with an OSHA-approved state plan may be required to post a state version of the OSHA poster. There is a separate poster for Federal agencies. The OSHA poster must be displayed in a conspicuous place where employees can see it. Copies of the poster shall be at least 8 1/2 by 14 inches with 10 point type. This poster is also available in Spanish and other languages. Posting of the notice in languages other than English is not required, but OSHA encourages employers with workers that speak other languages to also display the other relevant versions of the poster.

Notices. Employees, former employees and their representatives have the right to review the OSHA Form 300, Log of Work-related Illnesses and Injuries, in its entirety. Employers are required to post the Summary of Work-related Injuries and Illnesses (Form 300A) in a visible location so that employees are aware of the injuries and illnesses that occur in their workplace. Employers are required to post the Summary Form (300A) by February 1 of the year following the year covered by the form and keep it posted until April 30 of that year.

DOL Contacts

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
Contact OSHA
Tel.: 1-800-321-OSHA (1-800-321-6742); TTY: 1-877-889-5627


Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA)

The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) protects service members’ reemployment rights when returning from a period of service in the uniformed services, including those called up from the reserves or National Guard, and prohibits employer discrimination based on military service or obligation.

The Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS) enforces USERRA.

Poster Requirements

Employers are required to provide to persons covered by USERRA a notice of the rights, benefits, and obligations of the employees and employers under USERRA.  To do this, employers may post the notice entitled Your Rights Under USERRA where employer notices are customarily placed, mail it, or by distributing it via electronic mail. There is no size requirement for the poster version of the notice.

DOL Contacts

Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS)
Contact VETS
Tel: 1-866-237-0275; TTY: 1-877-889-5627


Whistleblower Protection Provisions

The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act) and twenty-one other statutes with whistleblower provisions protect workers against retaliation for filing certain complaints with their employers, unions, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), or other government agencies. These protections cover complaints about workplace safety and health; the environment; pipeline safety; aviation safety; nuclear safety; asbestos in schools; corporate fraud; SEC rules or regulations; commercial motor vehicle safety, health, or security; public transportation safety or security; railroad safety or security; or fraud, waste, or abuse of public funds intended to be used for public transportation or railroad safety or security; as well as other related protected activities. Retaliation may include employment termination or layoff, reductions in pay or hours, demotion, discipline, blacklisting, denial of overtime or promotion, failure to hire or rehire, or denial of benefits.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration administers and enforces the whistleblowing provisions of the OSH Act and the twenty one other statutes.

Poster Requirements

Posters. Although there is no specific Whistleblower Poster, the Whistleblower Protection provisions have the following poster requirements under the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act) and the Energy Reorganization Act of 1974 (ERA):

All employers covered by the OSH Act are required to display and keep displayed the OSHA “Job Safety and Health: It’s the Law(http://www.osha.gov/Publications/poster.html)” poster. The poster is also available in Spanish(http://www.osha.gov/Publications/osha3167.pdf). There is a separate poster for Federal agencies(http://www.osha.gov/Publications/fedposter.html). This poster informs employees of their right to file a retaliation or discrimination complaint with OSHA for making safety and health complaints or for exercising rights under the OSH Act.

The poster must be displayed in a conspicuous place where employees and applicants for employment can see it.  Reproductions or facsimiles of the poster shall be at least 8 1/2 by 14 inches with 10 point type.  Posting of the notice in languages other than English is not required.

Employers covered by the Energy Reorganization Act of 1974 (ERA) must display the poster, “Your Rights Under the Energy Reorganization Act(http://www.whistleblowers.gov/acts/era_poster_2011.pdf),” where employees can readily see it.

Notices.  There are generally no notice requirements for employers under most of the Whistleblower Protection provisions administered and enforced by OSHA. For other notice requirements under the OSH Act, see the OSHA Injury and Illness Recordkeeping and Reporting Requirements.

DOL Contacts

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
Contact OSHA
Tel.: 1-800-321-OSHA (1-800-321-6742); TTY: 1-877-889-5627


For questions on other DOL laws, please call DOL's Toll-Free Help Line at 1-866-4-USA-DOL (1-866-487-2365). Live assistance is available in English and Spanish, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Additional service is available in more than 140 languages through a translation service.