Overview: Almost all employers must comply with federal laws that require a minimum wage for most workers and establish other workplace rules. But many employers that enter into contracts with the federal government or the District of Columbia must also comply with additional laws that dictate prevailing wages and working conditions.
The Walsh-Healey Public Contracts Act applies to contracts of more than $10,000 for the manufacture or purchase of goods and supplies; the McNamara-O'Hara Service Contract Act (SCA) applies to contracts of more than $2,500 for services; and the Davis-Bacon Act (DBA) applies to contracts of more than $2,000 for the construction, alteration or repair of public buildings and public works.
Trends: President Obama has issued an Executive Order requiring that employees of most federal contractors be paid a minimum wage of $10.10 per hour starting January 1, 2015.
Author: Michael Cardman, Legal Editor
Updated to include state veterans preference law, effective March 22, 2017.
Updated to reflect paycheck transparency requirements under the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order, and paid sick leave requirements, both effective January 1, 2017.
Updated to reflect an increase in the minimum wage for workers on federal contracts covered by Executive Order 13658, effective January 1, 2017.
Updated to reflect law allowing private employers to grant a veterans preference, effective October 1, 2016.
The US Department of Labor (DOL) and the Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council (FAR Council) have issued the final "blacklisting" rule and accompanying guidance. The rule requires immediate action by federal contractors to ensure compliance.
Updated to reflect new law permitting private employers to provide a veterans preference, effective July 6, 2016.
The Department of Labor has published a proposed rule to implement President Obama's 2015 executive order requiring federal contractors to offer their employees up to seven days of paid sick leave per year. Under the proposed rule, employees could use their paid sick leave not only for their own conditions, but also to care for sick children, parents, spouses or partners.
As mandated by the US Department of Labor, every employer performing work covered by the McNamara-O'Hara Service Contract Act (SCA) or by the Walsh-Healey Public Contracts Act (PCA) must post the Employee Rights on Government Contracts Poster.
As mandated by the US Department of Labor, every employer performing work covered by the labor standards of the Davis-Bacon Act must post the Employee Rights Under the Davis-Bacon Act Poster.
As mandated by the US Department of Labor, federal contractors and subcontractors subject to Executive Order 13495 must post the Displaced Employee Rights on Successor Contracts Poster.