However, some states have stricter overtime policies and require overtime in other situations. Mandatory Vacation Time: California employers are not required to give vacation time. It is highly advised to speak to an employment law attorney to find out whether or not travel time pay was calculated properly in your particular situation. Morillion v. Royal Packing Co., 22 Cal. Copyright 2020 SV Employment Law Firm PC | Legal Notice, Employment Compliance and Strategic Counseling, http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/commute, Update for California Employers – There are New Emergency Regulations For The Handling Of COVID-19 Issues, California Court of Appeal Finds Overbroad Confidentiality Agreements Can Violate California’s Ban on Restrictive Covenants and be Grounds to Overturn an Arbitration Award, California Voters Help App-based Transportation Companies by Approving Proposition 22, Case Alert — An Arbitrator’s Power To Order Third Party Discovery Depends On The Applicable Arbitration Language. Your employer told you to drive to a store in Los Angeles to buy some donuts during normal work hours. Commute time from residence to remote client or vendor locations that exceeds regular commute time (i.e., the delta between regular commute and additional time to reach remote site). If you are asked by your employer or supervisor to drive to a store to pick up some items during normal work hours, you should be paid for your travel time. The Judicial Council of California adopted payment policies for contract court interpreters in February 1, 2000. 5542(b)(2) and 5544(a)(3) and 5 CFR 550.112(g) and (j). One and one-half times the employee's regular rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of eight hours up to and including 12 hours in any workday, and for the first eight hours worked on the seventh consecutive day of work in a workweek; and The Portal-to-Portal Act makes clear that employers do not need to pay employees for time spent traveling from their homes to their workplace before the start of the workday or traveling from their workplace to their homes after the workday is over. That is why you are highly advised to get a free consultation from an experienced Los Angeles employment law attorney to determine whether or not your travel time pay is fair, or how to take legal action against an employer who does not pay for travel expenses. Regular Commute: An employer is not required to compensate an employee for the time it takes him to go from his residence to his regular work site. The California employer must pay 1-1/2 or 2 times the regular rate of pay for all time worked over 8 hours in a day or 40 hours in a week. And because any time spent traveling is compensable, all compensable travel time in California counts toward the number of hours worked in calculating any required overtime premium pay. Although you do not usually have to pay an employee for time spent commuting, you must pay for travel time if that time is part of the job. The term “hours worked,” however, is not all that simple to define or apply. Generally, employees should be compensated for all time spent traveling during regular business hours, and under the FLSA, travel time associated with overnight stays is generally considered compensable work time when it “cuts across the employee’s workday.” For example, if a vacation policy gives an employee ten days of vacation each year, he or she will accrue five days of vacation after working for six months. Are you eligible for travel time pay? Under California employment laws, travel time should be paid, and can be either local trips or travel away from home. Off-the-Clock work is work performed outside of regular business hours, or pre- or post-shift work may be compensable. However, to establish this pay rate for travel time, employers must inform workers before travel. An employee is “controlled” by the employer whenever the employer “directs, commands or restrains” an employee. Calculating travel time pay and understanding employment laws is not the easiest task. If you have not been for a one-day or overnight stay, seek immediately legal advice of a lawyer. Federal Paid Sick Leave Rights (2020): A Comprehensive Guide for Employees Coronavirus: A Guide to California Workers' Rights. An employer in Los Angeles and elsewhere in California is required to compensate his employees for any time spent traveling away from home. Travel time can include both local trips and travel away from home. HR Manual sections 2201 – Travel and Relocation Policy and 2203 – Allowances and Travel Reimbursements provide additional travel policy information, including lodging reimbursement policy and the excess lodging request approval process. January 27, 2020, Torrance, CA - Rager Law Firm Featured In The Los Angeles & San Francisco Daily Journal Article, 'Fighting The Bully'. The “travel rate” must be not less than the minimum wage (currently $10.00 per hour in California) and the employee must be notified of the different rate prior to undertaking the travel time. For non-exempt employees, travel time – as well as education and training time – are classified as “working hours,” which means their employers are legally required to pay them for it. “Suffered or permitted” to work refers to time worked where the employer knows the employee is working and does nothing to stop it, or when the employer possesses information from which such knowledge can be inferred, and that the employer “had reason to know” that the employee was performing work on its behalf. California passed a law in 2015 mandating that employers provide at least 3 days of paid sick leave a year. Whether that leave is paid or unpaid depends on the employer’s paid leave, vacation or other paid time off policies. Be sure and check your location for its own minimum wage rate. Finally, remember that California requires employers to record all hours worked, including travel time. Travel Between Clients in a Single Workday. 2201: Travel and Relocation Policy California minimum wage laws require an employer to count employee travel time as hours worked whenever it requires employees to travel, no matter when the travel occurs. You are eligible to receive pay for local travel time only if you are a non-exempt employee (meaning: you are employed on an hourly basis). Staring And Leering At Work – When Does This Become Sexual Harassment. If an employee resides on the premises of a location covered by IWC Wage Order 5-98, only the time actually spent working will be considered hours worked. You are eligible to receive pay for local travel time only if you are a non-exempt employee (meaning: you are employed on an hourly basis). (To learn the rules on eligibility and accrual, see our article on California paid sick leave) Vacation Accrual. Once you conclude the time is “worked,” you must include those numbers in overtime calculations, and decide whether you want to pay travel at a different rate than the employee’s regular rate of pay. Click Here To View Article. Our Los Angeles employment law attorney Jeffrey Rager to spell out what is travel time pay, when you are eligible to receive it, how it is calculated, and whether travel time always equals business time. Please contact us with questions at 650-265-0222 or info@svelf.com. The regular rate is calculated as follows: Regular Hours + Travel Hours in Workweek You don't have to pay employees for travel that is incidental to the employee's duties and time spent commuting (traveling between home and work). Travel time will be paid at the employee’s regular hourly rate, or overtime rate when the total number of hours worked is in excess of 40 in a pay week (Sunday through Saturday). Let’s say, for example, that your employer directs you to attend a two-day event in New York City. Mandatory Remote Conferences and Meetings, Taking the company controlled vehicle (bus, van, vehicle) where the employee cannot perform personal tasks (stopping to shop, dropping kids off at school, etc.). Need more information? In case you are traveling for both work-related activities and personal travel, you will have to keep separate checks for business-related expenses. The California employer must pay 1-1/2 or 2 times the regular rate of pay for all time worked over 8 hours in a day or 40 hours in a week. All causes of action were based on the failure to pay for the transporting time. Time spent traveling during normal work hours is considered compensable work time. The regular rate is calculated as follows: Regular Hours + Travel Hours in Workweek Exempt employees, who are paid based on their performance and expertise, are not entitled to travel time pay. Ridesharing: An employer is not required to compensate an employee for time spent in company provided transportation from a pick up point to the work site so long as participation is entirely voluntary. Travel Time. Contact Rager Offices Law for a free case evaluation. However, the employee must be paid for all … PML 2016-010: Travel/Relocation Programs – Business, Travel, and Relocation Policy and Reimbursements for Employees in BU 2, 7, 9, and all Excluded Employees; PML 2016-020: PML 2016-020 - 7/27/2016 - Travel/Relocation Programs – Travel Reimbursement Rate Increases for Excluded Employees; Related Policies. App. As an enforcement policy, WHD will not consider as work time the time the employee spends as a passenger on an airplane, train, boat, bus or automobile when in travel away from home outside of regular working hours. • If travel time exceeds 8 hours in one day or if travel time plus working time exceeds 8 hours in a day (or 40 hours in a workweek), the Company will compensate the employee at the appropriate overtime pay rate, which will be equal to 11/2 times the weighted Hourly employees, meanwhile, should be paid on an hourly basis, which means travel time may not be as easy to calculate. A comprehensive guide to travel time pay rules in California—when employees are entitled to be paid for travel time and how to recover those lost wages. If, for instance, an employer provides a bus for workers that picks them up at a subway station and transports them to work but the employee could get there by using his own transportation; i.e., a car, bike, etc., the employer is not required to pay compensation. The California Supreme Court held that the reimbursement rate can be negotiated by parties as long as it fully reimburses the employee, and the amount does not have to be set at the IRS mileage rate. The former refers to an employee’s personal time spent to commute back and forth from work to home, while travel time is time spent traveling by an employee for work-related activities. Non-exempt employees (regular, limited term or temporary) must be compensated for time spent traveling based on the guidelines outlined below. For travel time overtime pay in this scenario, the state uses a “weighted average” method. 4th 968, 975. Travel and Commuting Time. In general, vacation accrues over time as an employee works. Calculating travel time pay for salaried employees, who get paid bi-weekly or monthly, is not a problem, since they get paid regardless of the number of hours worked. California law requires that employers pay employees for all hours worked. Also, the employee must be informed of the lower rate in advance of the assigned travel. Employer Control of Travel: An employer is required to compensate an employee for time spent riding in or driving a company vehicle from his home or a central stop to the work site if the employer requires employees to reach their worksite on company provided transportation. However, commuting travel time may be compensable under California law if the employee is subject to the control of the employer during the commute. But before we delve into the topic, let’s make sure that you understand the difference between commuting time and travel time. California employment law also allows employers to implement a different rate of travel time pay to be no less than California minimum wage. What do you mean by “control”? California Wage Orders (issued by the California Industrial Welfare Commission [the “IWC”]), define “hours worked” as “time during which an employee is subject to control of the employer, and includes all the time the employee is suffered or permitted to work, whether or not required to do so.” IWC Wage Order 4, Section 2K. The Court also warned that employee cannot waive the right to be fully reimbursed for their actual expenses: For example, if your employees are required to go out on service calls, the time spent traveling to and from the customers must be paid. That is why you should speak to an attorney to learn more. Travel time itself is not the only thing that an employer pays for. Pay day for full-time and part-time employees is typically the last day of the month or the first day of the next month. Paid Non-working Time Overview in California There are times when you need to pay a nonexempt employee for time not spent working. Definitely. For example, let’s get back to the situation we have mentioned in the very beginning. It is illegal for an employer to retaliate … One option is to establish a separate rate of pay for travel time that is less than the employee’s normal hourly rate. (Note: California differs from federal law in complying with minimum wage requirements. January 15, 2019, Los Angeles, CA - Court Awards Kaiser Employee $1,228,721.96 In Wrongful Termination Case, Represented By Jeffrey Rager. Yes; however, as discussed above, when travel time constitutes hours worked, an employer must always pay at least minimum wage to its employees for all hours worked (see generally Wage Orders’ Section 4 and also 29 USC § 206.) In other words, an employer is required to compensate for travel if the time falls into either or both categories. Understanding Travel Pay Laws in California As a general rule, California employees are paid for all of their time spent working, and this includes time that an employee spends traveling for work. Employees who incur approved overnight lodging expenses may be reimbursed. Yes, so long as all time is compensated at a rate equal to or higher than the minimum wage rate for California. Call our Los Angeles offices at 310-527-6994 or fill out this contact form today. See 29 CFR § 785.35One exception to this general rule is when an employee’s workday has ended and they are called back to work. This policy shall also be subordinate to any other provisions of law pertaining to travel. It also includes time spent, even if not doing work, but under the control of the employer, such as on-site, on-call time. ... Travel and Relocation Policy. The rules on travel hours of work depend on whether an employee is covered by or exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Travel time is considered compensable work hours where the employer requires its employees to meet at a designated place, use the employer’s transportation to and from the worksite, and prohibits employees from using their own transportation (Morillion v. Royal Packing Co., 22 Cal.4th 575 (2000)). If your employee is clocking a lot of travel hours, he may need to be paid at an overtime rate. to represent wrongful termination clients in other locations. Although the term “suffered or permitted” is included within the Order’s overall discussion of employer control, California courts have held that the tests for whether an employee was “controlled” or “suffered or permitted” to work can also be independent of each other. Merriam-Webster defines the term “commute” as “to travel some distance between one’s home and place of work on a regular basis.” (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/commute). Employers may require employees use their vacation or paid time off benefits before they are allowed to take unpaid leave, but cannot mandate that employees use paid sick leave. In other words, is the employer in control? Can my boss fire me for filing a claim for travel expenses? Sick leave is another matter. For instance, in terms of travel time, certain tasks have been found to be compensable: If an employee is required to attend an offsite conference or meeting, the time spent traveling to and from the meeting is compensable. If you pay a special rate for travel time, or other special circumstances, you must establish and communicate the rate to employees in advance of the event. Click Here To View Article. At the federal level, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is the primary law governing travel pay. Under this option, they were compensated for time spent traveling to and from the garage. 4th 575, 583(2000). Plaintiffs alleged three causes of action: failure to pay the minimum wage, failure to pay wages timely, and unfair business practices. The standard asks whether the employee’s time is spent primarily for the benefit of the employer. [DLSE Enforcement Policies and Interpretation Manual, section 45.3 - 45.3.1]. In general, your business should pay employees for the time they spend traveling for work-related activities. Are you going to get paid for that trip, and why? Commuting Time: Under both California and federal law, travel time to and from work does not ordinarily constitute “hours worked” and is not compensable. For FLSA-exempt employees, the crediting of travel time as hours of work is governed under title 5 rules-in particular, 5 U.S.C. Want to check your calculations? On Call Time For Employees in the Housekeeping Industry. Waiting for the company vehicle where the use of the vehicle is mandatory. Bono Enterprises, Inc. v. Bradshaw (1995) 32 Cal. An employer is not required to pay employees for any personal time taken while traveling, such as sleep time, meals, or sightseeing. The analysis is compounded when the hours worked are, for instance, part of the employee’s commute, consist of travel to a remote conference, or spent moving from client to client throughout the day. Whether on a one-day or overnight stay, seek immediately legal advice of a lawyer immediately. On California paid sick leave Rights ( 2020 ): a Comprehensive for. Meeting is compensable get paid for that trip, and unfair business practices of travel time itself not. February 1, 2000 time off policies compensable work time be subordinate to any provisions... Angeles and elsewhere in California There are times when you need to pay for overtime purposes or pre- post-shift. Flsa-Exempt employees, who are paid based on their performance and expertise, are entitled. Or unpaid depends on the failure to pay a nonexempt employee for time worked 40. 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At work – when Does this Become Sexual Harassment attending a mandatory shuttle service from the employee ’ normal!