Is it legal for an employer to make an office outing mandatory, then tell you can go if you want or not but if you don’t you lose 1/2 day pay?

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Is it legal for an employer to make an office outing mandatory, then tell you can go if you want or not but if you don’t you lose 1/2 day pay?

Also, if said outing is mandatory is it legal for the employer to tell the employees that they can decide if they want to go or not but if you go you get paid a full day and if you don’t you lose half a days pay.

Asked on August 23, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Hourly staff could be not paid for the duration of the outing, if it is during normal work/shift hours--it would be like not showing up for, say, a half-day of work. If the outing is not during their normal hours, if they don't go, they don't have to be paid for it--but they cannot be docked pay for not showing.

Salaried staff could lose a full day of pay IF the outing occupies an entire normal work day, since salaried staff may have their pay reduced in day-increments for missing entire days of work--they cannot be docked a half-days pay, however; salaried staff pay reductions or docking can only be in full day increments. If the outing is not during the staff's normal work day, they cannot lose any pay.


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