Can you legally be terminated for not coming to work on your days off if requested?

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Can you legally be terminated for not coming to work on your days off if requested?

My employer has just informed us that she reserves the right to terminate us if we do not accept coming to work on our days off. She says that she can basically force us to come to work on our days off if she requests so, or feel the need to call us in. Is there any legal basis for this statement?

Asked on February 9, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Montana

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The general rule is that an employer can set the terms and conditions of an employment relationship; including having an employee work on their scheduled days off (as well as work mandatory overtime).  Unless a union/employment agreement does not allow for such action, or this situation has arisen due to some type of workplace discrimination, your employer's policy does not violate the law.

Note:  The FLSA (Fair Labor Standards Act) requires that some employees be paid overtime when they work more than 40 hours a week.  It divides employees into categories of salaried employees.  These are the “salaried exempt,” who are not protected by overtime laws, and the “non-exempt,” who are entitled to overtime.  Exempt employees are “executives” or administrators”and they are not entitled to overtime.  Unless exempted from the overtime regulations, employees covered by the Act must receive overtime pay for hours worked in excess of 40 in a workweek at a rate not less than time and one-half their regular rates of pay.


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