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EEOC Issues New Guidance on Reasonable Accommodation for Employee Religious Attire and Grooming Practices

March 12, 2014

By KENNETH W. GAGE & SEAN M. SMITH

As religious accommodation claims are on the rise, the EEOC has issued guidance concerning when and how it expects employers to provide workplace accommodations to employees who have sincerely held religious beliefs that require them to dress or groom themselves in a particular manner. Notably, however, the agency has staked out an aggressive view of the law that is not clearly in line with existing case law. So employers should carefully assess how they are approaching employee requests for religious accommodations.