Is there a maximum amount of hours you can work in a day?

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Is there a maximum amount of hours you can work in a day?

I am routinely worked 16 hours a day and at some points 20. Is this legal?

Asked on May 4, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

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

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

No, there is no maximum number of hours that you can be scheduled for. That is unless you work in a regulated profession or industry such as an airline pilot or truck driver. Otherwise, so long as there does not exist a union agreement or employment contract to the contrary, you can be required to work as many hours as your employer deems appropriate. This is part of what is known as "at will" employment which means that a company can set the conditions of the workplace as it sees fit (absent some form of legally actionable discrimination). 

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it is legal unless 1) you have a contract (or union agreement) limiting hours worked (if you do, that contract is enforceable), or 2) you are in one of  a very small number of jobs where hours worked are regulated for safety reasons, such as truck driver or airplane pilot. Otherwise, the law does not limit hours worked.


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