Is it legal to have your time clock set to start at 800 am even if you start work at 730 but don’t get pay for those 30 minutes?

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Is it legal to have your time clock set to start at 800 am even if you start work at 730 but don’t get pay for those 30 minutes?

Currently at my job they have gotten new time clocks which they have set to start
exactly at 800 am even if you clock in at 730 am or anytime prior to that. I
know the main reason is so they don’t have to pay over time. Is this legal to do?

Asked on June 2, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, it is not legal. Labor law (such as the Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA) requires that employers keep accurate time records, pay employees for *all* time worked, and pay overtime as applicable. What you describe is illegal: your employer may choose to not let you start working until 8am if they like (employers have free discretion to set hours of employment or work), but if they let you clock in and begin working prior to 8am, they have to track the time and pay you for it. If you are working without being paid for it, you could contact the department of labor to file a complaint.


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