Human Resources

Holiday Party Do’s and Don’ts... Legally Speaking

Human Resources

The holidays are the most festive time of year! One of the many festivities you’ll likely be participating in is your office holiday party, but when you are planning a party for your employees there are some things you’ll want to keep in mind to ensure your employees are not having to have awkward conversations with Human Resources the Monday morning following the party.

What is Appropriate Holiday Party Attire?

First, when planning the company holiday party you will want to make sure the appropriate attire for the party is clearly communicated to your employees. For a typical day at work, your employees can look to their employee handbook for a clear communication of what attire is work appropriate. However, most companies do not provide the same clear communication regarding the appropriate attire for holiday their holiday parties.

When planning your holiday party you should clearly state what attire is appropriate for the event. For example, with the invitation you should include they type of attire expected (i.e. formal, business causal, etc.) as well as examples of appropriate attire (i.e. button up shirts, cocktail dresses, etc.) and inappropriate attire (i.e. low cut attire, etc.).

Remind Employees of Harassment and Other Company Policies

Additionally, it is a good idea to remind all employees of the sexual harassment and substance abuse policies your company has in place, and that those same policies apply during the holiday party. Providing your employees with a reminder of the sexual harassment policies will hopefully make them think twice before acting in a way that would violate the company policies. If you are providing alcohol to your employees at the party you will want to consider putting a system into place so employees will not drink and drive. Consider providing your employees with Lyft or Uber credit so they can get to and from the party safely.

Should Non-Exempt Employees Track Their Attendance?

Finally, if employee’s attendance at the company holiday party required, you will want to be sure that non-exempt employees are accurately tracking their time attending the party and also being paid accordingly.

A good way to see if your company is in a good position as we move into the holiday party season to review the company policies set forth in your employee handbook. At Slate Law Group, our employment law practice provides assistance to both San Diego employer and employees. Because California employment law is frequently changing, it is important to have your employee handbook reviewed by a San Diego attorney to ensure your policies are up to date. By having a San Diego attorney review your employee handbook, you can at least be apprised on changes in the law that may affect your business.

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