Proposed Bills Increase Orlando Small Business Liability: Part 1

Proposed Bills Increase Orlando Small Business Liability: Part 1

Florida representatives for the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) spoke at the capitol last week against proposed legislation that would increase business liability in various situations. They outwardly opposed seven bills that would increase regulations and penalties for workplace discrimination as well as a proposed minimum wage increase. Florida Small Business reps cited potential severe financial consequences of these legislations for small companies as their primary motive for resistance towards the measures.

Top on the speaking agenda for the NFIB is counter-arguing bills which seek to add new classes protected under Civil Rights Legislation.

  • The Pregnancy Bill includes pregnant individuals as a protected class under Florida’s Civil Rights Laws, in doing so discrimination based on pregnancy in the workplace would become a State offense. The NFIB alleges that Federal regulations are adequately protecting this class and claims that the addition of such a State ordinance would double small business liability exposure while decreasing large business expose by two thirds.
  • Criminal History Protection would require all criminal checks be done secondary to initial qualification screenings. If passed the bill will allow criminal background checks to be performed only as part of a subsequent selection process. The NFIB asserts that this legislation would be an improper Federal interference into the hiring process of independent businesses.
  • Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expressing would become a protected civil class under Florida’s Civil Rights Laws. Real or perceived discrimination based upon these factors would therein be protected as workplace discrimination. This could expose small businesses to costly new liabilities.
  • Credit History Check Regulation. Regulations would prohibit companies form considering a candidate’s credit reports, history, or standing in their eligibility for employment. NFIB officials argue that this not only interferes with business practices, it also creates new liability exposure risks.

Attaining the right amount of coverage is essential, especially in this increasingly contentious world. At Newman Crane we understand the hard work and dedication it takes to build a business, and the severity of losing those hard earned assets in a lawsuit. Contact one of our Business Liability specialists today to learn more about setting up an affordable, full-coverage policy to protect you and your company. For more information our Orlando Florida commercial insurance office can be reached at (407) 859-3691. 

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