When uniforms are a mandatory term of employment, the issue of who must pay for the cost of furnishing and cleaning said uniforms comes into question. Though many states have laws in place that prohibit employers from charging employees for uniforms, or from deducting the cost of uniforms from workers’ paychecks, Texas does not. That does not mean, however, that employees must always pay for their work clothes. Before you pay for a work uniform in the Longhorn State, you should first understand your rights.
According to the Texas Workforce Commission, your employer has the right to deduct the reasonable cost of work uniforms and associated cleaning costs from your paycheck or to ask you to purchase clothes that are consistent with the dress code. However, your employer’s right to do this becomes restricted if the deduction or cost of work clothes would take you below minimum wage. The same is true if the uniform bears the company’s logo or brand.
If your employer supplies you with clothes for which you must pay, he or she must make it clear that he or she did so for your convenience only. This means that the clothes must be suitable for off duty use as well. Your employer must also make clear that the clothes are not a condition of employment or otherwise a requirement for the job.
If your employer, the state or the nature of your work requires you to wear a uniform, your employer may request that you to pay for the clothing so long as doing so would not reduce your pay below minimum wage. The same is true if your employer, the state or the nature of your work requires you to regularly clean and maintain your uniform.
You should not use this article as legal advice. It is for educational purposes only.