How can the company I work for schedule me for more then 40 hours a week, yet still have me as part-time so they don’t have to give me benefits?

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How can the company I work for schedule me for more then 40 hours a week, yet still have me as part-time so they don’t have to give me benefits?

I work for a big grain merchandising company I work 50 hours a week at the least and during harvest months I work about 80 hours a week sometimes more I have been here about 9 months and they still have me down as part-time because part-time employees don’t get benefits like insurance, holiday pay, sick time, overtime, maternity leave or anything. I am 5 months pregnant and need benefits and they won’t change it they only do this to the women the girl before me was pregnant and had been here for 4 years and they wouldn’t give her any benefits she finally put in her notice and they fired her 2 days later. How is this legal it just doesn’t seem right?

Asked on July 9, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Kansas

Answers:

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

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, this practice is not against the law. There is no legal definition of part-time or full-time. An employer can demand that an employee work as many hours as they wish as long as the worker paid properly for their time. That is unless such a practice violates the terms of a union agreement or employment contract. Also, it cannot not be based on any form of actionable discrimination. That means that you must not be receiving lesser treatment due to a disability, age (over 40). natinality, race, religion or gender. Since you indicate that only female part-time employees are given full-time work schedules, then you may have a claim here. At this point you can file a complaint with the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) or consult directly with an employment law attorney in your area.


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