U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

How Do You Count the Number of Employees an Employer Has?


Usually, a worker can be counted as an “employee” if s/he has worked for the employer for at least twenty calendar weeks (in this year or last). That means some part-time workers can be covered as employees to show the employer is covered by the laws we enforce. People who are not employed by the employer, such as independent contractors, are not covered.

Coverage for Employers with Several Worksites

In some cases, if the employer has more than one worksite, employees at each of the worksites can be counted together. For example, if an employer operates four different restaurants, it may be possible to count employees at all of the restaurants together.

Deciding Who Is Covered

Figuring out whether an employer has enough employees to be covered by the laws we enforce can be complicated. If you aren’t sure how many employees there are, you should contact one of our field offices as soon as possible so we can make that decision. Also, keep in mind that even if an employer doesn’t have enough employees to be covered by the laws we enforce, it may still be covered by state or local law. If it is, we can refer you to the state or local agency responsible for enforcing that law.