Employee Handbooks - Work Rules - Employee Conduct: Alaska
Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.
Author: Gloria Ju
- Alaska is an employment at-will state, and it recognizes that an employee handbook can alter the at-will relationship. See At-Will Nature of Employment.
- State employees have a right to express political opinions and to be free from discrimination due to political beliefs. See Work Rules Concerning Political Activity and Employee Expression of Views.
- State employers may not restrict the off-hours speech or activities of employees who are not speaking or acting in an official capacity. See Work Rules Concerning Political Activity and Employee Expression of Views.
- All public officers within the state's executive branch agencies must abide by the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act. See Work Rules Concerning Employee Codes of Conduct, Ethics and Conflicts of Interest.
- Nepotism rules apply to state employment. See Personal Relationships.
- Employers may voluntarily establish a drug and alcohol testing program for current and prospective employees, but they must first adopt and distribute a written drug and alcohol testing policy. See Drug Testing.
- Employers can prohibit smoking in the workplace, or they can designate areas in which smoking is allowed. Alaska law requires appropriate signs to be displayed. See Smoking in the Workplace.
- Employers may not adopt or enforce a policy or rule prohibiting an individual from possessing or locking a firearm within a motor vehicle on employer property. See Work Rules Regarding Workplace Violence.
- In order to ensure employer-issued equipment is returned clean and in good condition, employers may deduct an amount from employees' wages as a security deposit, as long as three rules are met. See Employer Equipment.
- Although the laws are not workplace-specific, Alaska employers should comply with state laws on intercepting, divulging and eavesdropping on private communications. See Monitoring/Surveillance.
- Employees who violate policies on theft or property damage can be disciplined as the employer sees fit. However, discipline in the form of a wage deduction is restricted by law. See Prohibited Conduct.
- Information about an employee's off-duty arrest is off-limits to employers. See Arrest or Conviction of Crime.
- Moonlighting is restricted in state employment. See Moonlighting and Outside Employment.
- Employees cannot be required to purchase a uniform under certain circumstances. See Work Rules Regulating Employee Dress, Grooming and Personal Appearance.
- Employers may provide employees with a flexible work schedule without being liable for paying overtime after eight hours in a day. See Work Hours and Workweek.
- On-call time and standby or waiting time must be included in overtime calculations. See Regular Work Hours Versus On-Call Hours.
- Only minors under 18 are entitled to meal or rest breaks. See Break Times and Meal Times.
- Employees must be paid at least monthly, but may elect a different pay period. See Regular Payday.
- Attendance policies must take into account state laws regarding jury duty, time off to vote, crime victims' rights and military leave. State employees and teachers have additional leave rights. See Work Rules Regarding Attendance, Tardiness and Timekeeping.
- Employers must understand that an employee terminated for misconduct according to the company handbook may be able to collect unemployment benefits. See Work Rules Concerning Employee Misconduct.
- The Alaska Human Rights Act prohibits discrimination in employment. See Work Rules Regarding Discrimination.