By Heather A. Hoyt, Esq.
Employers may generally impose rules requiring employees to adhere to reasonable workplace appearance, grooming and dress standards. But as straightforward as the issue seems to be, grooming standards can create problems for employers.
The best practice: Craft a policy that requires employees to maintain a neat, clean, professional appearance.
But employers can't apply a grooming policy that fails to accommodate employees' religious needs or that places undo requirements on transgender people.
Employers may impose rules governing dress and grooming that include different standards for men and women, as long the policy does not disproportionately burden either sex.
For example, a female bartender who sued when she was fired for refusing to wear required makeup failed to persuade the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals that the grooming policy was particularly onerous.
H...(register to read more)
- Employees who don't meet whistle-blower law requirements still have legal protection
- Hiring or promoting? OK to discount experience if it's trumped by other factors
- Labor Department seeks more funds to boost enforcement
- Poor service an issue? Seek customer testimony
- Misconduct is the key to enforcing your 'no rehire' policy