Know Your HR Law

Sometimes it seems like HR professionals have a lot in common with tightrope walkers—we both have to be able to delicately balance while walking a fine line in front of a watchful audience. For HR professionals, striking the right balance is about making decisions that are good for business as well as safeguarding the interests of employees. 

Staying current on federal and state policy issues and laws that might affect HR’s areas of responsibility is part of this balancing act. New legislation and court  decisions like the overturning of Roe v. Wade can change legal requirements. These changes can then require you to reexamine and revise policies. If your organization has employees in multiple states or operates internationally, this can add an additional layer of complexity.    

There are a lot of areas in which changing laws and new policies can affect HR policies. Consider, for example, healthcare, labor and employment laws, injury and worker’s compensation, retirement and unemployment, and much more. Staying current and compliant with ever-changing updates is essential to the HR profession, and your leadership role in setting, communicating, and enforcing company policy.  

What are the best ways to stay current on changes that may affect employment law? Here are three ways you and your team can make this important aspect of the job easier to ensure an up-to-date and ethically sound HR function. 

Be an active member in professional associations

Membership in a professional industry association like SHRM can help you stay informed about current and proposed changes—and what they might mean for your role and organization. SHRM publishes a weekly Workplace Compliance e-newsletter with summaries of legal decisions, legislative and regulatory news, and analysis of what these changes mean for your organization. 

To get the most out of your professional membership, become actively engaged with a local chapter affiliate like DallasHR. Attend events and follow regular updates like those we share with members. These will give you critical local insight as well as access to subject matter experts through events and training. 

Contract with an employment attorney

Many companies stay current on legislation and updates by contracting with an employment law attorney. The attorney’s office provides updates on relevant legislation at the federal, state, and local levels.

Attend industry conferences

Many HR professionals look to national events like The HRSouthwest Conference to keep current on specifics as well as trends at the industry level. Attend the Legal Exchange sponsored by SixFifty. The extended session on Wednesday, October 19 from 8:00 – 10:45 includes the following topics:

What to Expect When You’re Litigating: Getting from a demand letter to a judgment

Movies and television—even the news—show us courtroom drama, but we only ever see the highlights. What happens in between? And how did the attorneys prepare for court? If you’re the client on either side, it starts with you. From document production and depositions through dispositive motions and jury selection, this session is a look at the real work—and cost—of litigation. 

Employee Relations and Benefits in the Wake of Dobbs

With Roe overturned, what is the state of the law and how does it affect employers? This area of law is rapidly evolving as cases play out across the country—the answers could change from day to day. This session will explore options and risks for employers navigating the realities of a post-Roe world.

Have you registered for The HRSouthwest Conference yet? If not, register now. If you are, we hope to see you at either (or both) of these sessions.

DallasHR is the third-largest SHRM affiliate chapter in the nation. With more than 2,000 engaged HR professionals, the Chapter has been Advancing the Value of HR since 1939 through innovative education, valuable networking events, and providing opportunities to share best practices with others in the field of HR. The HRSouthwest Conference powered by DallasHR is the official Texas SHRM conference and one of the largest regional HR events in the U.S. Visit us at and follow us at #dallashr, #hrswc.