If my boss paid me in advance, can he force me to do other jobs?

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If my boss paid me in advance, can he force me to do other jobs?

I work for a dentist as a receptionist. My boss pays me once a month a fixed sum on the beginning of the month for the past month. Because he cut the hours back and I didn’t work as much as hour as the money was calculated for he tells me I owe him some working hours and now his giving me the choice either pay him back the money I owe (for which I already paid tax) or in exchange he wants me to do everything. Such as go in my day off to do cleaning, assisting (which I don’t have any experience) work overtime, without paying any overtime because he wants to deduct the overtime from the hours I owe him.

Asked on September 22, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

1) Employers can set the terms and conditions of employment, including what tasks employees do. Regardless of your job title or description, your boss can ask you to do other tasks. For example, even managers could be made to do janitorial tasks.

2) Employers set the hours and days of employment; an employer can require someone to work on weekends, evenings, etc.

3) If you were overpaid for the amount of work you actually did (i.e. you are an hourly employee, and you were paid for more hours than you worked), the employer can require you to return the money; alternately, you and he can work out some other way to pay it back, such as by working enough extra hours to "use up" the overpayment.

4) However, employers may not avoid overtime requirements. Under federal law, if you are a nonexempt employee, you must be paid time and half for all hours over 40 worked in one work week. Under CA law, you need to be paid overtime (time and a half) for all hours over 8 worked in one work day.


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