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Overview of United States

America – also known as USA – lies south of Canada and north of Mexico. The official language is English although many also speak Spanish or another language. It is divided into 50 different states who each have their own rules and regulations. The country is run by a president who is elected every 4 years. America has the largest and most influential market in the world.

Americans are known to be very open, informal and friendly. This friendliness also transfers into the business world where if the business opportunity is right, Americans will strike. They are not bothered to first build up a relationship. If one develops afterwards, all the better but this is not the goal. Americans are very direct and get to the point quickly. Punctuality is valued as the common American saying is: time is money. Most Americans will be dressed casually for meetings.

Currency of United States

  • US Dollar

Health Insurance and the Social Security system of United States

As of the 1st of January 2019, having health insurance is no longer mandatory in the United States.

In America, health insurance is a plan or policy that covers a percentage of doctor’s visits and hospital bills. This plan or policy is between you and your insurance company.

There are various plans one can be a part of. Medicaid is there for lower income families, Medicare is there for people over 65 or who qualify due to a disability or special situation. One might be insured through an employer or an individual plan such as the Affordable Care act (ACA) Plan.

Having health insurance in America does not mean that healthcare is free. One pays a monthly rate to the insurance company but most members also have to pay a specified out-of-pocket expense before the health insurance even kicks in. Only when a specific out-of-pocket rate has been reached throughout the year, does the health insurance come in and take over the rest.

Most health insurances in America have a special period of time – called open enrolment – where one can start, change or stop one’s healthcare plans.

Employer cost of United States

The cost for an employer to hire someone in America is 7.65%.

Salary and bonuses of United States

America has one of the most versatile payday systems in the world. Employees are either paid weekly, bi-weekly or monthly.

Commissions, incentives, and bonuses are variable and will be agreed upon directly with the employer.

Public Holidays in United States

In America, there are 10 public holidays.

  • January 1st – New Years Day
  • Monday between January 15–21 – Martin Luther King’s Birthday
  • Monday between February 15–21 – Washington’s Birthday
  • Monday between May 25–31 – Memorial Day
  • July 4th – Independance Day
  • Monday between September 1–7 – Labor Day
  • Monday between October 8–14 – Columbus Day
  • November 11th – Veterans Day
  • Thursday between November 22–28 – Thanksgiving
  • December 25th – Christmas

Working Hours in United States

Regular working hours in America are from 9am till 5pm.

A work week is 40 hours long. Overtime is expected when deadlines are to be met and emails are to answered after regular work hours.

There is no limit to amount of overtime allowed to be worked. Workers must receive overtime pay at a rate of no less than 150% of their regular pay unless this is otherwise stated in their contract.

Vacation in United States

In America one receive on average 10 days of vacation a year. This can vary from employer to employer. Usually, holiday time is collected in the first year of employment and then one becomes eligible to their 10 days of vacation.

Sick Leave in United States

In America, there is no national requirement at the time to offer paid sick leave. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) requires companies that have more than 50 employees to allow an employee unpaid time off for medical leave or to care for a family member.

Termination/Severance in United States

Most of the worker in America are “at-will employee”. This means, that the employer-employee relationship can end at any time for any reason or no reason at all – as long as the employee is not being fired for discriminatory reasons. For an employee this means that they can leave at any period in time, with a 2 weeks notice or no notice at all. For an employer, this means that there is virtually any reason for termination. There is no formal procedure that needs to be followed when terminating an employee in America.

Severance payments are not regulated by the law and need not be made. However, some employers offer severance payments to bind an agreement made with the former employee at the time of termination. This is used to avoid potential future claims that may arise from the termination.