If indeed that’s how your company does it, that’s sex discrimination and is illegal.(Or at least it’s illegal if your company is big enough to be covered by federal discrimination statutes — meaning that it has 15 or more employees.) As for the question of whether they need reasonable suspicion, employers don’t generally need “proof” before taking disciplinary action against employees in matter, but because the issue of romantic relations is a sticky one, I turned to employment attorney Bryan Cavanaugh to weigh in.Throw in the fact that they have a pattern of firing the women in these couples but not the men, and there’s something pretty disturbing there.I’d say that you have to decide if you want to work for a company that operates that way.“There are certain prejudices against people who are romantically involved with the boss—people would question promotions and raises.”Even though everyone’s fair play if your company doesn’t have a policy, Williams says that it’s difficult for a subordinate to consent to a relationship with a supervisor because of the inherent pressure and influence of his or her advances.“Your company is the one that pays the harassment bill and insurance doesn’t cover it,” says Williams. “If you think you can hide your affair from your coworkers, think again,” says Williams.
“If you’re in a situation where no relationships are allowed, there’s no grey there,” says Haefner.
“You’re there to do business and personal relationships are secondary.”If your company allows a relationship, pursue it with discretion.
“You’re there to work—your company’s paying you for a job to do,” says Amanda Lachapelle, director of human resources and talent acquisition at Glassdoor. “If there’s no policy, it’s never ever a good idea to get involved with someone in a reporting structure, whether they report to you or vice versa,” warns Cunningham.
Two of my coworkers have warned me to be careful, as there have just been rumors of people in the past possibly having relations and the woman was always the one to be terminated.
It is indeed legal to prohibit dating between coworkers (with a few exceptions, such as in California, where courts have ruled that the state constitution provides broader privacy protection in employment matters).