Mandatory training payment?

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Mandatory training payment?

Is it legal, in Texas, to send
employees offsite or to the companies
main office for company required
training after work hours and not pay
it as time worked, including overtime
since it’s beyond our scheduled 40
hours?

Asked on July 29, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, required training which your company sends you out for is work time and hourly employees must be paid for it, including overtime as applicable. "Work" is not just actively "working," since sitting around your desk during your normal workday waiting for your supervisor to give you a project is just as much "work" (and must be paid) as being productive. Basically, if the company requires you to be somewhere or do something, that is work--including training time. So the employees should be paid, and could file a wage-and-hour complaint with the department of labor is not paid--though if you're only talking 2- 3 hours, it's not clear that it's worth taking legal action or filing a claim against the employer. (Still, they could if they chose.)
As an aside, voluntary training does not have to be paid, even if it's down with company financial support: e.g. if an employee wants to get some credential or certification that makes him/her more valuable, then even if the company offers to pay for the class, if the company did not require or order it, it is not considered payable work time.


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