Company Policy v. Employee Rights: Are You in Violation?

Company Policy v. Employee Rights Are You in ViolationWhile most company policies are well intentioned, they can potentially infringe on employee rights. As we dive deeper into the common workplace policies that can catch legal heat, evaluate your business’ procedures and protect it with a NJ Employment Practices Liability solution. Here are the top five guidelines that need to be enforced appropriately.

Personal Appearance- Although it is reasonable to expect employees to follow certain personal hygiene guidelines and look professional in the workplace, there are limits to your business’ policies. Any guidelines that interfere with religion, culture, or other protected-class characteristics must not be discriminated against. Any rules regarding tattoos, piercings, facial hair, and clothing should be clearly stated in your company’s policies.

Off the Clock Behavior- Drinking or smoking legally outside of work should not be monitored by your company. However, if performance is affected by these activities, the employee should be consulted in private to come to a resolution based on your company’s protocol.

Social Media- The National Labor Relations Act, Section 7, declares that employees have the right to discuss wages, benefits, and other terms of employment, and this applies to their social media activity, as well. It is illegal in many states to request personal social media information and to prohibit certain conversations from occurring publicly on these forums.

Smoking- Smoking can be prohibited from company property. However, as long as employees are not smoking near the regulated ventilation systems and in designated areas, it is legal. This rule also includes the use of e-cigarettes.

Dating- Although completely forbidding workplace dating is not legal, your company can encourage employees to separate work and romantic relationships as it can pose a conflict of interest.

Navigating these delicate policies can be difficult, especially in relation to staying out of legal trouble. At Tri-State Insurance Agency, we specialize in providing adequate knowledge and advice to properly protect your business against potential litigation resulting from a variety of risks. To learn more about our offerings for the construction industry, as well of our other specialty niches, contact us today at (888) 990-0526.