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Religious Accommodations Tips




Notice Concerning the Undue Hardship Standard in Title VII Religious Accommodation Cases.

This document was issued prior to the Supreme Court’s decision in Groff v. DeJoy, 143 S. Ct. 2279 (2023). The Groff opinion clarified that “showing ‘more than a de minimis cost’…does not suffice to establish undue hardship under Title VII.” Instead, the Supreme Court held that “undue hardship is shown when a burden is substantial in the overall context of an employer’s business,” “tak[ing] into account all relevant factors in the case at hand, including the particular accommodations at issue and their practical impact in light of the nature, size and operating cost of an employer.” Groff supersedes any contrary information on this webpage. For more information about the EEOC’s resources on religious discrimination, please see

An applicant or employee may need a reasonable accommodation (a change to the way things are normally done at work) so he can practice or observe his religion.


For example, an applicant may ask to reschedule an interview that is on a religious holiday or an employee may request an exception to a "no hats" rule to wear a religious head covering, such as a yarmulke or hijab.

  • Understand who the law protects. The law protects people who have sincere religious, ethical or moral beliefs. This includes people who belong to traditional, organized religions, such as Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism or Sikhism, as well as people who have newer or less common religious beliefs, and atheists.
  • Consider the request. Don't automatically refuse an accommodation request or have an inflexible policy that doesn't allow for exceptions.
    • Review each request individually. Avoid assumptions about religious beliefs or practices or appropriate accommodations.
    • Discuss the request with the applicant or employee if needed to ensure you understand the employee's religious needs and available accommodation options. For example, if an employee requests a schedule change so she can attend religious services, you may want to discuss when the services take place and the conflicts posed by the employee's current schedule so you can determine whether a schedule adjustment is possible.
  • Provide an effective accommodation, unless doing so would require more than minimal cost, based on your resources and the operation of your business.
  • Be receptive to additional accommodation requests. An employee's religious beliefs and work responsibilities may change over time, resulting in additional or alternative accommodation requests.

See also:

What should I do if an applicant or employee asks for breaks, leave or other changes to a work situation because of his medical condition or his religious beliefs?

Reasonable Accommodation Policy Tips

Manager Responsibilities - Reasonable Accommodation Tips

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