If an employee worked 4.5 hours, is it legal to pay the employee for only 2.5 hours?

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If an employee worked 4.5 hours, is it legal to pay the employee for only 2.5 hours?

My fiance went to work Saturday at 6 am, worked until 10:30 am and took his personal car to the job site. He had a note from the owner of the company saying since he didn’t work a full day that he was docking 2 hours. Is that legal?

Asked on July 24, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, North Carolina

Answers:

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

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, it is not. Under both federal and state law, an employee is to be paid for all hours worked. That having been said, absent an employment contract or collective bargaining agreement to the contrary, if he was suppossed to have worked the whole day and didn't, then he can be otherwise disciplined. For example, being scheduled to work fewer hours, having to work night and/or weekend hours, getting a reduction pay, etc. However, not getting paid at all for time worked is not an option.

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

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, it is not. Under both federal and state law, an employee is to be paid for all hours worked. That having been said, absent an employment contract or collective bargaining agreement to the contrary, if he was suppossed to have worked the whole day and didn't, then he can be otherwise disciplined. For example, being scheduled to work fewer hours, having to work night and/or weekend hours, getting a reduction pay, etc. However, not getting paid at all for time worked is not an option. 


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