Can an employer dock your hours if you are late to work?

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Can an employer dock your hours if you are late to work?

I recently received and email from my employer
stating a policy and being on time to work, here
it reads Showing up on time Starting
January 7, 2019, anyone clocking in 1-30
minutes late will forfeit 1/2 hour’s pay clocking
in 31-60 minutes late will incur a forfeiture of 1
hour’s pay, etc.

IsIf I am reading this correctly they are stating
that if I clock in at 803am then they will be
deducting a hours pay. Is this legal?

Asked on January 1, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If you an hourly employee (paid on an hourly basis), your employer does not have to pay you for any time you are late or otherwise not at work, but can't take additional time, so if you are 5 minutes late, you are not paid for those 5 minutes--but they can't take a half hour. The law is very clear that hourly employees must be paid for all time worked, and if not, they could file a wage and hour complaint with the department of labor. 
There are other things an employer may do if you are late: suspend you; demote you; reduce your wage or hours going forward; even terminate you. But they can't dock pay.


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