Rules and Regulations for Public Restrooms

Last updated on March 23rd, 2020 at 08:13 pm


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was founded to protect workers from unsafe working conditions. One of the workplace features that OSHA has established regulations for is employee bathrooms. If you fail to adhere to OSHA restroom laws, you may face fines or a lawsuit could be filed against your organization. When designing a new restroom, it’s important to follow OSHA rules from the very beginning of the process.

Are you new to OSHA bathroom laws? Now is the time to familiarize yourself so you can avoid violations. OSHA restroom regulations fall into a few broad categories, including availability, volume and allocation, hand-washing accommodations and layout.

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Availability is one of the top priorities when it comes to employee restrooms. OSHA requires employers to give workers easy access to bathrooms. OSHA also mandates that employers refrain from imposing unreasonable restrictions on restroom usage and avoid a setup that causes extended delays to restroom accessibility.

It’s important to take your employees’ needs into account in the context of availability. For example, workers with prostate or bladder problems and individuals with physical disabilities may need to use the bathroom more often than their coworkers, so you must plan accordingly.


OSHA has requirements for the volume of toilets an employer must provide. If your company employs 15 or fewer people, you’re only required to have one unisex bathroom that has a locking door. Companies with 150 or more employees must have at least six available toilets. You must also add one toilet for every additional 40 employees you hire.

Employers that have 15 or fewer employees do not need to segregate bathrooms between genders. Companies that have more employees must designate their bathrooms as being available for males or females, unless the restrooms can only accommodate one person and the doors can be locked from the inside.


Every employee bathroom must have running water, soap and a means for people to dry their hands, such as towels or dryers. OSHA requires employers to keep the hand-washing stations in their restrooms clean and in good working order.


The layout of an employee bathroom must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and satisfy OSHA’s requirements. In bathrooms with multiple toilets, OSHA requires each toilet to be in an individual compartment made with partitions that are sufficiently high to ensure privacy.


If you need to create a bathroom layout that adheres to OSHA restroom rules, we can help. Our wide variety of products includes partitions in laminate, powder-coated steel, solid plastic or stainless steel as well as a variety of colors.

One Point Partitions can provide a complimentary design consultation, and we’ll even send you a free mock-up of your approved design. When you’re ready to install bathroom partitions that are both ADA and OSHA compliant, we’ll ship the supplies you need to your location at no additional charge.

Andy Hughes

Andy started One Point Partitions with his brother Jason Hughes. Andy has been here since 2006 and is always striving for easier better ways to provide partitions. Andy graduated from Iowa State University and has been in construction and product sales for much of his career. He spends his free time fishing and traveling....but mostly fishing. And fishing some more. Give him a shout today!