Some employees refuse to follow rules prohibiting off-the-clock work. Some—insisting they can’t complete their work any other way—may clock out and then return to work.
That puts employers at risk for wage-and-hour lawsuits. You don’t have to put up with it.
Recent case: Johnson worked for Macy’s and was caught working after clocking out. His supervisor explained this was against the rules—but properly agreed to pay him for the 1,500 hours he had worked without pay.
The following week, Johnson was caught working off the clock again. He said he was just trying to help the company. Macy’s fired him anyway, and he applied for unemployment compensation. Macy’s argued he wasn’t eligible because he engaged in misconduct.
The court agreed and denied him benefits. (Pragoo v. Macy’s Retail Holdings, No. A12-0308, Court of Appeals of Minnesota, 2012)
- Tell managers: Don't retaliate against those who complain
- Focus on ability to perform duties if you worry worker may have mental or emotional problems
- What's your duty to accommodate domestic violence victims?
- It's an emergency! Can we fire worker whose volunteer firefighting duties cause absences?
- Never let fired employee unfairly blame bias; be prepared to prove performance deficiencies