Can my employer make me take time off without pay on a scheduled working day because the holiday is on a Sunday?

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Can my employer make me take time off without pay on a scheduled working day because the holiday is on a Sunday?

My company is making the Monday after Christmas a holiday but they will not be paying us for that holiday, instead we are being forced to work on Saturday, our scheduled day off. They are just doing this to my department, is this legal?

Asked on November 2, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Kentucky

Answers:

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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Unless there is a union agreement, employment contract or existing company policy to the contrary, an employer can mandate the days that employees do or do not work (with or without notice). Since paid holidays are provided at the discretion of an employer (i.e. employers are not obligated legally to give them), they have a great deal of discretion if and when such time may be taken 

The fact is an employer has a great of latitude in setting the terms and conditions of the workplace. An employee for their part, can either comply or quit, their choice. This is known as "at will" employment.

However, if an employee or group of employees are singled out for differing treatment then they might have a claim if actionable discrimination played a factor (i.e. reasons of race, religion, etc. were present). Otherwise, employees need not all be treated equally or even fairly.


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