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I recently applied for a job online. I had gotten a call from them and email that they wanted to interview me.

Lemoyne, PA |

I applied to a cleaning company for a job. After doing the application which no where in the application did it mention anything about physical appearence. They contacted my by email to set up an interview. I had called them to set up a time and asked them about there tattoo policy. I was told they were to find out by cooperate or management and they would get back to me. When I spoke with her on the phone I told her i had several tattoos and had one of 3 stars around my left eye. She then responded to me and said " our company policy dont mind body tattoos but facial tattoos is against our company policy and standards. Is this considered discrimination or how can they have 2 different policys on tattoos. Most are No tattoos, or visable......

Attorney Answers 4


  1. Although this might very well be a form of discrimination, it isn’t necessarily illegal discrimination. In employment law, only certain types of discrimination are prohibited (race, color, religion, sex, pregnancy, national origin, age (if 40 or older), disability, or genetic information). If you feel that your circumstances qualify, you must file a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to preserve any Federal claims and with the Pennsylvania Human Rights Coalition (PHRC) to preserve any state discrimination claims. Generally you only have 180 days to file a claim.

    Stew Crawford, Jr., Esq.
    CRAWFFORD LAW FIRM

    877-992-6311. scrawfordjr@subrolaw.us. www.crawfordlaw.org. All information provided in this comment is intended for informational purposes only and does not, by itself, create an attorney client relationship. Without the benefit of a personal consultation to explore all of the facts of your legal problem, the information in this posting may be inaccurate and for that reason it should not be relied upon. If you wish to consult with an attorney, or have any questions concerning this comment, please feel free to contact our offices through any of the above contact sources.


  2. Generally, in employment at will situations, employers are free to set policies as long as they do not discriminate based on a protected category (such as age, race, sex, etc...). I don't believe your face tattoos put you in a protected category.


  3. Employers are free to adopt policies against hiring persons with visible body modifications such as tats, piercings, etc. It is discrimination -- lawful discrimination.

    No legal advice here. READ THIS BEFORE you contact me! My responses to questions on Avvo are never intended as legal advice and must not be relied upon as if they were legal advice. I give legal advice ONLY in the course of a formal attorney-client relationship. Exchange of information through Avvo's Questions forum does not establish an attorney-client relationship with me. That relationship is established only by joint execution of a written agreement for legal services. My law firm does not provide free consultations. Please do not call or write to me with a “few questions” that require me to analyze the specific facts of your history and your license application and prescribe for you how to get a State license. Send me an email to schedule a paid Consultation for that kind of information, direction, and assistance. My law firm presently accepts cases involving State and federal licenses and permits; discipline against State and federal licenses; and disciplinary and academic challenges to universities, colleges, boarding schools, and private schools. We take cases of wrongful termination or employment discrimination only if the claims involve peace officers, universities or colleges.


  4. The other attorneys are correct.

    I don't see that there are two tattoo policies. I see one policy that states that body tattoos are allowed but that facial tattoos are not. In many cases, visible tattoos are the problem with companies. When it comes to tattoos, you will most likely not be fired for having them, but having them may keep you from being hired. When looking for a job, it is considered wise to cover tattoos during interviews until you can see what the company policy might be. I know that this is stifling creativity, but you don't want your ink to be the focus of the interview.

    As you have facial tattoos, you may face a lot of discrimination, but facial tattoos do not put you not a protected class. That being said, you may want to look for positions in companies and businesses that are considered more creative. There are some companies that would not hire anyone with a tattoo because of the company image, and there are other companies that embrace their employees' body art. Good luck!

    Anastatia Quirk Ellis, Esq. is licensed to practice law in Florida, Massachusetts and U.S. Tax Court. This answer is provided as general information and does not initiate an attorney-client relationship. I have never met you, and we have never spoken directly. I am not your lawyer. You can reach The Law Offices of Anastatia Quirk Ellis, P.A. at 813-625-0222 or at www.aqelaw.com.

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