Your personal assets are also at risk, as a new court ruling shows.
That's because the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) allows employees to sue their bosses, execs and HR professionals for personal liability for altering pay records.
For breaks to be unpaid, employees must be completely relieved of their duties. (That's one reason to discourage them from eating lunch at their desks.)
A group of "living assistants" (hourly workers) at a home for the disabled worked 48-hour weekend shifts and were required to check on each resident every two hours, around the clock. When those employees turned in their time sheets, managers routinely deducted eight hours because each living assistant supposedly got two four-hour breaks. The CEO then signed off on the altered time sheets.
The employees couldn't leave the building during "breaks" and had to call the main office once an hour. Because the time wasn't their own, the court said they should be compensated.
The FLSA Compliance Guide has saved many confused and frustrated employers from expensive, unnecessary lawsuits. It can do the same for you. Learn howThe Kicker:
The court held the CEO personally liable, ordering him and the company to pay more than $500,000 to the employees, including $155,000 as a penalty. (Chao v. SelfPride, No. 06-1203, 4th Cir.)
Remember, what you don't know about FLSA regulations could land you in the middle of a costly, time-consuming lawsuit or audit. The FLSA Compliance Guide can help you stay on top of those regulations and protect your personal assets.
You’ll better understand:
- Who is and isn’t eligible for overtime pay
- When pay can be docked
- How to compensate employees who work from home
- The difference between minimum wage and “living wage”
- When a break does or doesn’t have to be compensated
- How to compensate vacation days and sick leave
- Your requirements and rights with regard to overtime
- How an incorrectly completed timesheet can cause you harm, even if you didn’t know about it