What is compensable time for overtime pay purposes under the FLSA?

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Compensable time under the FLSA laws means all the time your employer must pay you.  Salary and overtime wage ideas confuse employees.   You may be entitled to be paid for time in addition to your scheduled  hours.   The application of FLSA law in a  particular workplace situation can be complicated. The Law Office of Rose H. Robbins, J.D. offers a free phone consultation to see if you are entitled to  additional compensable time. Call (954) 946-8130 now or use the form at end of page to contact us for your individual free consultation with a lawyer.

When Do 12 Typical Problems Arise for Overtime Pay and Compensable Time?

Problems arise when employers fail to recognize and count certain hours such as, for example,  lunches and breaks worked as compensable hours.

12 Typical Miscalculations of Overtime by Employers Under the FLSA:

1.) Rest and Meal Breaks:

a) Rest breaks of short duration, usually 20 minutes or less,  must be counted as hours worked. These are compensable!

b) Lunch breaks. If 30 minutes or more are allowed for a meal break, employer does not need to compensate employee. However, the employee must be completely relieved from work duty. Otherwise, the entire meal break time is compensable!

2.) Employees “Suffered or Permitted” to work. Work not requested but suffered or permitted to be performed is work time that must be paid for by the employer.  The reason why the employee has continued to work is immaterial. The additional hours are work time and are compensable!

3.) Waiting Time. The facts may show that the employee was engaged to wait (which is compensable) or the facts may show that the employee was waiting to be engaged (which is not compensable).

4.) On-Call Time. An employee who is required to remain on call on the employer’s premises is working while “on call.” An employee who is required to remain on call at home, or who is allowed to leave a message where he/she can be reached, is not working (in most cases) while on call. Calculating compensable time is more complicated for “on-call” time.

5.) Sleeping Time and Certain Other Activities.  An employee who is required to be on duty for less than 24 hours is working even though he/she is permitted to sleep or engage in other personal activities when not busy.

6.) Lectures, Meetings and Training Programs. Attendance at lectures, meetings, training programs and similar activities need not be counted as working time only if four criteria are met, namely: it is outside normal hours, it is voluntary, not job related, and no other work is concurrently performed. A complicated calculation.

 7.) Travel Time. The principles which apply in determining whether time spent in travel is compensable time depends upon the kind of travel involved.

 8.)Home to Work Travel. An employee who travels from home before the regular workday and returns to his/her home at the end of the workday is engaged in ordinary home to work travel, which is not work time. A more complex analysis for compensable time determination.

 9.) Home to Work on a Special One Day Assignment in Another City. An employee who regularly works at a fixed location in one city is given a special one day assignment in another city and returns home the same day. The time spent in traveling to and returning from the other city is work time, except that the employer may deduct/not count that time the employee would normally spend commuting to the regular work site.

10.)  Travel That is All in a Day’s Work. Time spent by an employee in travel as part of their principal activity, such as travel from job site to job site during the workday, is work time and must be counted as hours worked.

 11.) Travel Away from Home Community. Travel that keeps an employee away from home overnight is travel away from home. Travel away from home is clearly work time when it cuts across the employee’s workday. .

12.) What does “Employ” Mean under the FLSA? By statutory definition the term “employ” includes “to suffer or permit to work.” It is compensable!

 If you feel that you have not been compensated for all the hours you have worked you may call the law office for a FREE strictly confidential consultation about your claim for minimum wage or unpaid overtime wage violations at: (954) 948-8130. Or you can complete the simple form below to schedule a phone call.  Please be advised that by merely submitting this form, no Attorney-Client relationship is formed with the law firm.   You must provide your name,  home or cell phone number, your email.  We look forward to hearing from you.