Can my employer require me to get a cell phone at my expense?

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Can my employer require me to get a cell phone at my expense?

I do not have one or the necessary means to pay for one. I am in auto sales and they have demanded that I sign that I would get a phone.

Asked on June 11, 2013 under Employment Labor Law, Wisconsin

Answers:

Tricia Dwyer / Tricia Dwyer Esq & Associates PLLC

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Hello. In general, an employer may dictate certain requirements of employment. An employee may be able to deduct certain items which are conditions of employment on her/his income taxes (clothing, for instance). Please confer with a private attorney in your state, as need be. The attorney assisting you will want to view any written agreements or other relevant written materials in order to provide you with appropriate legal advice. Some attorneys are available seven days for emergency legal needs. Many attorneys will confer initially at no charge. Then, if legal work is performed, some attorneys will provide a reduced fee for financial hardship. Some attorneys may also assist you in limited scope manner to conserve legal costs. All the best.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Yes it can. At lease as long as such a mandate does not violate exisiting company policy, a union agreement or employment contract. Also, so long as it does not constitute some form of actionable discrimination. The fact is that in an "at will" employment relationship, an employer can generally set the terms and conditions of employment much as it sees fit. This includes requiring just what clothing, services or (as in your case) equipment an employee needs. Therefore, your company can make you have your own cell phone (or tablet or laptop, etc0.


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