Is on call time supposed to be paid if the person was supposively on uncontrolled time?

Is on call time supposed to be paid if
the person was supposively on
uncontrolled time? Even though he gets
in trouble for not being at home when
he gets a call.

Asked on December 26, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If you can do most things that you might ordinarily do in your life and control you time--that is, you can sleep, watch TV or read, do chores, eat, socialize, exercise, etc.--while on call, then even though you have to be reachable and respond if called in, the on-call time itself is not work time and you do not have to be paid. The law accepts that being on call will put some restrictions on you, but so long as you are largely free to do as you want, it is not considered work or compensible time.

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