Not all that long ago most jobs required an employee to clock in around 9:00 in the morning and clock out around 5:00 in the afternoon, hence the term working a “9 to 5” job. In the 21st century, however, more and more jobs work non-traditional hours and/or work from non-traditional locations.
People are increasing mobile as the world continues to shrink and advances in technology allow us to communicate and even work from remote locations.
Employers are also increasingly using the option of having an employee “on call.” How does all of this impact a worker’s pay though?
If an employee is “on call” must the employee be paid for this time?
As is so often the case with employment related questions, there is no “one size fits all” answer to that question. An employee may, or may not, be entitled to be paid for time spent “on call.”
To determine if an employee is entitled to pay for time spent on-call it is necessary to consider the individual facts and circumstances because there is no overriding rule. There are, however, several factors that should be considered when deciding if the employee is entitled to pay for on-call time, including:
Location – is the employee required to remain on the employer’s property, on the property of a client/customer, or within a specific distance from the employer/client? If so, the employee is likely required to be paid for on-call time.
Control – how many constraints has the employer put on the employee during on-call time? For example, is the employee prohibited from drinking alcohol, venturing beyond a specific geographic distance, or having passengers in his/her vehicle while on-call? The more restrictions, the more likely the employee is entitled to pay while on-call.
Frequency of calls – how often is the employee actually called in to work while on-call? If the employee is constantly called back to work he/she is probably entitled to pay for on-call time. Conversely, if the employee rarely gets called back to work the employer may not be required to compensate the employee for on-call time.
Time to respond – is the employee required to respond to a pager, cell phone, or other alert within a specific period of time? If you, it is more likely compensation will be required.
Whether you are an employee or an employer, if you are uncertain whether or not the law requires an on-call employee to be compensated it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced Florida employment law attorney as soon as possible. Contact the experienced Florida employment law attorneys at Celler Legal, P.A. by calling 954-716-8601 to schedule your appointment.