What is the poilicy on shift differential compensation.

I work at a call center and we start at 11. I was moved to overnights and was
told it comes with a 2 shift differential, which had been the case previously
this was not a new policy, on top of eligibility for bonus based on call
statistics. Ive since worked 3 weeks overnight and have not gotten compensated
the difference with no explanation. But our issue is they consider it a bonus,
which gets taxed higher than just an hourly wage. But also there are little
things that arise that will disqualify you from receiving the 2 difference like
being a minute late or not working 100 of hours. One I am wondering are they
allowed to consider it a bonus and not just make my hourly wage the 13 it should
be. And two what penalties does the employer face being they have not compensated
me even to their standards for my work. Thank you.

Asked on June 21, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Arizona


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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not to pay for a shift differential is up to an employer's discretion. In other words, it is not legally mandated. To the extent that it is provided by an employer, much like PTO, it can set the terms/conditions of such pay. That having been said, no form of legally actionable discrimnation can be a factor in your treatment. Also, your employer's action cannot violate a union agreement or employment contract.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The short answer is, there is no law on shift differential pay: the law does NOT require it, so it is completely up to the employer whether to offer it and, if they offer it, what conditions to put on it or how to treat it (as regular pay or as a bonus). While it's understandable why you are upset at this, they have the right to make it almost impossiible to earn the differential pay, since they don't have to provide differential pay at all.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.