As a W-2 employee, is it legal for a company to NOT pay you for the hours you are clocked in?

I am a Massage Therapist and I work for
a Franchise Massage company.
I am a W-2 employee and for thirteen
years I have only gotten paid for the
‘hands on massage hours’ not the hours
that I am there, clocked in.

Is this legal, am I obligated to be
reebursed for past hours?

Asked on July 13, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Texas


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not you are actually engaged in your work, any time that your employer requires you to be at their palce of business is considerd to be compensable work time. And an employee must be paid for all time worked. Accordingly, you are entitled for back pay. At this point, you can either contact a local employment law attorney and/or file a claim with your state's department of labor and file a wage complaint.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

What you describe is NOT legal: an hourly employee must be paid for all hours worked, which includes *all* hours when he or she is required by the employer to be at the place or location of business, even if he or she is not actually doing work at the moment. The fact that your employer requires you to be at work makes it work, no matter what you are doing.
You are entitled to back pay, but not necessarily for the whole time of your employment, if you have been there for a while: for no more than the last two years.

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