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Can You Require Employees to Wear a Uniform by Law?

Uniforms and the Law

What does the law have to say about employee uniforms?

There are a lot of advantages to uniforms in the workplace.  Some of these being:

  • They are aesthetically pleasing.
  • Appearing as professional as possible
  • Making employees recognizable
  • Increasing brand awareness

…And so much more!  But, is the law on your side for implementing a uniform policy? The short answer: YES!

The Fair Labor Standards Act Uniform Law

This law does not require employees to wear uniforms, but it does allow business to implement uniform policies.  This means that there is nothing legally requiring workers to wear uniforms, but it does give employers the freedom to decide whether they’d like to have such policies.  The law goes on to recommend that the employer supply uniforms and then they can deduct the cost of the uniforms as business expenses.  The law also stipulates that if an employer chooses to have workers pay for their own uniforms, they are within their rights to do so as long as employees are still properly compensated for their work.

OSHA Uniform Law

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s uniform law, employers are required to provide employees with protective equipment.  Like the Fair Labor Standards Act, this law also does not require companies to cover the cost of non-safety related uniforms as long as employees are paid at least the federal minimum wage.  For example, if a company is paying an employee $8.25 per hour and they wanted to deduct the price of a uniform, they could take up to $1.00 per hour because (as of 2017) federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour.

Uniform Cost and Overtime

If an employer mandates uniforms and requires an hourly employee to pay for his or her uniforms and that employee works more than 40 hours in a given workweek, the cost of the uniform can NOT reduce the amount of overtime pay the employee receives.  Federal law states that if an hourly employee works over 40 hours, they are to be paid time and a half for any time worked over 40 hours.  So, uniform cost may be deducted from hourly wages up to but not exceeding 40 hours.

Looking for Workplace Uniforms?

For all your business’s uniform needs, rely on Ace Uniform. Whether you need uniforms in the food, automotive, industrial, construction, medical, security, or you-name-it industry, we can provide you with the uniforms you need for the price you want. Give us a call at 1-800-366-1616 or visit us online to learn how we can help meet your needs. Want to get to know us even better? Visit us on social media on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.

This entry was posted on Friday, May 26th, 2017 at 2:29 pm . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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