When you’re ready to hire employees residing and working in Montana, it’s important to ensure that your employee handbook adheres to both federal and Montana employee handbook requirements. While employers aren’t required to create and distribute employee handbooks, they are required to implement and comply with a variety of policies in the workplace. Employee handbooks are a good resource because they allow employers to easily document the required policies and show that they have complied with applicable law. They also offer an introduction to the company, act as a resource for employees and managers, and set expectations. However, if your Montana employee handbook fails to comply with state-specific employment laws, it could leave your company open to significant risk.

Violating state or federal laws in your Montana employee handbook policies can subject your company to substantial legal liability—but researching and writing state-specific employee handbooks can be a time-consuming and expensive prospect, especially if you intend to expand your workforce across multiple states. Not only that, if proper drafting wasn’t already, it has become incredibly important in light of the NLRB’s recent decision in Stericycle, Inc. and Teamsters Local 628. In that decision, the NLRB made it clear that any work rule or policy instituted by employers must advance a legitimate business interest and not infringe on employee rights under Section 7 of the NLRA.

Fortunately, SixFifty’s Employment Docs offers employers invaluable support, simplifying state and federal compliance. This platform streamlines the process, making it faster and more cost-effective to draft high-quality, compliant documents.

Here’s the important information to know about creating your own Montana employee handbooks.

Required Montana employee handbook policies

Montana has six required state employee handbook policies:

  • Business Expense Reimbursement Policy
  • Crime Victim Leave Policy
  • Leave of Absence to Hold Public Office Policy
  • Pay Transparency Policy
  • Pregnancy Leave Policy
  • Witness Duty Leave Policy

All of these policies must be included in your state-specific Montana handbook.

Optional Montana employee handbook policies

In addition to the six required Montana employee handbook policies, employers are free to add any of the following optional policies:

  • Affinity Group Policy
  • Arbitration Policy
  • Background Check Policy
  • Business Expense Policy
  • Company Property Policy
  • Confidentiality and Trade Secrets Policy
  • Desk Hoteling Policy
  • Direct Deposit Policy
  • Dress Code Policy
  • Drug and Alcohol Abuse Policy
  • Electronic Devices While Driving Policy
  • Employee Benefits Policy
  • Employee Classification Policy
  • Employee Dating Policy
  • Employee References Policy
  • Employment of Relatives Policy
  • Exit Interview Policy
  • Gifts Policy
  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Holidays Policy
  • Immigration Law Compliance Policy
  • Lactation Accommodation Policy
  • Leave Policies, including: Paid Sick Leave; Bereavement Leave; Organ, Bone Marrow, and Blood Donor Leave; Domestic Violence Leave; Voting Leave; Civil Service Leave; School Activity Leave
  • Marijuana Policy
  • Off-Duty Use of Facilities Policy
  • Outside Employment Policy
  • Overtime Policy
  • Payment of Wages Policy
  • Payroll Deductions Policy
  • Performance Review Policy
  • Personnel Files Policy
  • Pets in the Workplace Policy
  • Progressive Discipline Policy
  • Public Relations Policy
  • Punctuality and Attendance Policy
  • Salary Pay Policy
  • Social Media Policy
  • Solicitation and Distribution of Literature Policy
  • Technology Systems Policy
  • Telecommuting Policy
  • Temporary Relocation Policy
  • Timekeeping Policy
  • Vacation/Paid Time Off Policy
  • Video Conferencing Policy
  • Workers’ Compensation Policy
  • Workplace Violence Policy
  • Workplace Visitor Policy
  • Workweek and Work Schedules Policy

Employers aren’t obligated to add any of these optional policies. Depending on your company and industry, employment type, and other factors, some of these policies may not be suitable for your organization.

Required federal employee handbook policies

All employee handbooks, regardless of state, must include the following federal employment law policies:

  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Policy
  • Equal Employment and Anti-Discrimination Policy
  • Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Policy (for companies with more than 50 employees)
  • Jury Duty Leave
  • Military Service Leave
  • Sexual Harassment Policy
  • Lactation Accommodation Policy
  • Religious Accommodation Policy

Employers in all 50 states are required to implement these policies, in addition to any that are required by the specific state(s) where they have employees. Therefore, all employee handbooks should contain these federal policies. Keep in mind that if your company does not meet the FMLA employee threshold, you do not have to include that policy until you have 50 or more workers—but it may be prudent to add it now if you’re approaching that threshold.

How to create a Montana employee handbook

Researching and drafting your own Montana employee handbook can prove to be a time-consuming and expensive process. Employers must pay careful attention to state and federal employment laws, since any failure to comply with these policies might expose your organization to legal risk.

Some employers opt to hire an attorney to handle the research and drafting, which is a safe route. However, if you’re hiring in multiple states, the billable hours can add up fast. Some employers turn to online templates, but that comes with its own set of risks. There’s no guarantee that one-size-fits-all employee handbook templates will cover all necessary state policies or use appropriate language.

That’s where SixFifty’s employee handbook creator comes into play. Instead of researching Montana employment law on your own, incurring the expenses of hiring a lawyer, or using an online template, there’s a better solution. SixFifty helps you create your own customized, state-specific employee handbooks that fully meet Montana employee handbook requirements. We support employers throughout the entire employment life cycle, from crafting offer letters and employee handbooks to separation agreements and offboarding documents. SixFifty’s Employment Docs module creates top-tier employment documents, and the best part is our legal team diligently keeps track of changes to employment legislation nationwide. Should any new developments arise, we will notify you so you can update your handbooks as needed.

Ready to learn more? Schedule a demo today!

Looking to create an employee handbook for a different state? View our interactive map for required employee handbook policies by state.