Can our employer make us wait to clock in?

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Can our employer make us wait to clock in?

On slower mornings when employees come in for their scheduled shifts our managers have us sit and wait, sometimes for 30 minutes and sometimes for a hour. At times it has even been 2 hours before having you clock in, if they do at all. There are times they make us wait for an hour or longer and will just end up sending us home anyway. Is this legal? Can they just make us wait in limbo like that?

Asked on February 4, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Colorado

Answers:

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

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If your employer has you wait at your workplace without giving you the freedom to come and go as you choose, that is considered to be compensable work time, so accordingly you need to be paid for it. This is true even if you are not "on the clock" (i.e. are not allowed to clock in). If your employer is doing this to you or your co-workers, they are breaking the law. At this point, you can either contact your state's department of labor to file a wage claim. You can also consult with an employment law attorney, especially if there numerous other employees who are being treated in the same way.

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

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If your employer has you wait at your workplace without giving you the freedom to come and go as you choose, that is considered to be compensable work time, so accordingly you need to be paid for it. This is true even if you are not "on the clock" (i.e. are not allowed to clock in). If your employer is doing this to you or your co-workers, they are breaking the law. At this point, you can either contact your state's department of labor to file a wage claim. You can also consult with an employment law attorney, especially if there numerous other employees who are being treated in the same way.


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