Uniforms and the Law

Although the federal Fair Labor Standards Act does not mandate uniforms in the workplace, it does allow for employers to require uniforms.

Occupational Safety And Health Administration (OSHA) Uniform Law

If OSHA requires Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in specific industries as well as in occupations that have hazards associated with them, the law requires that the employer must pay for the PPE. Items can include: safety vests, goggles, protective clothing, helmets, shoes and more.

Minimum Wage And Overtime Laws

An employer that requires a non-OSHA mandated uniform may pass the cost of the uniform on to the employee as long as that employee is paid minimum wage and allows for the cost to be deducted from paychecks. Uniform costs also cannot reduce an employees required overtime compensation. An employer who requires the employee to pay for the uniform must pay at least $7.25 per hour AFTER deducting the cost of the uniform. Basically, if an employee is paid $8.25 per hour, the employer may deduct no more than $1.00 per hour for uniform expenses. Some states also have their own separate laws that work in conjunction with the federal law. Make sure you have all the information you need before implementing your uniform policy.

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