Workplace Policy on Nepotism

Sample taken from

The employment of relatives can cause various problems including but not limited to charges of favoritism, conflicts of interest, family discord and scheduling conflicts that may work to the disadvantage of both the agency and its employees.

For the purposes of this policy the term “relative” shall include the following relationships: relationships established by blood, marriage, or legal action. Examples include the employee’s: spouse, mother, father, son, daughter, sister, brother, mother-in-law, father-in-law, sister-in-law, brother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, stepparent, stepchild, aunt, uncle, nephew, niece, grandparent, grandson, or cousin. The term also includes domestic partners (a person with whom the employee’s life is interdependent and who shares a common residence) and, a daughter or son of an employee’s domestic partner.

It is the goal of the agency to avoid creating or maintaining circumstances in which the appearance or possibility of favoritism, conflicts or management disruptions exist. The agency may allow existing personal relationships to be maintained or employ individuals with personal relationships to current employees under the following circumstances:

  • Individuals may not work under the supervision of the same manager.
  • They may not create a supervisor/subordinate relationship with a family member.
  • They may not supervise or evaluate a family member.
  • The relationship will not create an adverse impact on work productivity or performance.
  • The relationship may not create an actual or perceived conflict-of-interest.
  • They may not audit or reviewing in any manner the individual’s work.

They may not be employed if a member of the employee’s immediate family (spouse, children, parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters, step family members, in-law family members) serves on the agency’s Board or any Committee or Council which has authority to review or order personnel actions or wage and salary adjustments which could affect his/her job.

No personal employee relationship covered by this policy will be allowed to be maintained, regardless of the positions involved, if it creates a disruption or potential disruption in the work environment, creates an actual or perceived conflict of interest or is prohibited by any legal or regulatory mandate.

This policy must be considered when hiring, promoting, or transferring any employee.

Should relationships addressed within this policy be identified with either candidates for employment or, current employees the matter should be immediately reported to the Director of Human Resources and the following policies and procedures will be followed:

  • A determination will be made whether the relationship is subject to the agency’s Nepotism policy based on the conditions described above.
  • If the relationship is determined to fall within one or more of the conditions described in this policy the HR Director in consultation with the affected employees and the agency’s ED/CEO will attempt will to resolve the situation through the transfer of one employee to a new position or identifying some other action (e.g., Supervisory reassignment) which will correct the conflict or 2 issue identified. If accommodations are not feasible then, with affected employee suggestions, the HR Director in consultation with the agency’s ED/CEO shall determine which employee must resign in order to resolve the situation.

The agency reserves the right to exercise appropriate managerial judgment to take such actions as may be necessary to achieve this intent of this policy. The agency reserves the right to vary from the guidelines outlined in this policy to address unusual circumstances on a case by case basis.

It is the responsibility of every employee to identify to the agency’s HR Director any potential or existing personal relationship which falls under the definitions provided in this policy. Employees who fail to disclose personal relationships covered by this policy will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including the termination of employment.