In this litigious age, it's no longer just the office gossips who are calling out coworker couples—now it's the company lawyers.
ABC News is reporting that some employers are asking dating coworkers to sign "love contracts," which define the nature of their relationship as consensual and restate the company's harassment policies.
"Think of it in terms of a prenup," said Good Morning America workplace contributor Tory Johnson. "In this particular case, you're saying to the employer, 'We'll prevent you from being held responsible for employment issues in the event of a failed personal relationship.' The employer should not have that burden."
While these contracts may be proliferating, they are not new. The National Law Journal reported in March 2005 that the then five-year-old idea had come from a San Francisco law firm, whose client company wanted protection from claims of sexual harassment. It's not unusual for harassment cases to arise from consensual relationships.
For coworkers in serious relationships, you can figure that signing the contract is no big deal. But for office flings that get found out, those could create some very awkward moments in the conference room with the corporate lawyers.