If sent home due to the office being closed due to unforeseen circumstances, am I entitled to compensation?

I am paid hourly. If I commute to work and the office is closed due to unforeseen circumstances without warning (a political protest), am I entitled to bill for part or the entire day?

Asked on October 25, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You can only bill for any time actually spent at the office, working, unfortunately. While you obviously spent time traveling to and from the office, and it might seem fair to be compensated for that time, you (presumably) are not normally paid for your time communting to and from work. Similarly, the time to and from the closed office is not compensible. (Unless, that is, you *are* allowed to bill for that time--a company could elect to pay its employees for their commutes if it chose--and if so, follow your normal procedure.)

If you worked at home that day, you may be able to bill for the time spent working offsite--hourly workers need to be paid for all time spent working, regardless of locaton. The issue there would whether you company allows offsite work--if they asked you to work, that is clearly billable; but also, they have the right to not allow staff to work at home.


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