What hours can an employee be made to work?

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What hours can an employee be made to work?

My son started working in restaurant about a month ago. He has been given warnings for taking too long with collecting orders from the hatch. He started work at 10 this morning and should have finished at 4 pm; he is still at work at 7 pm. He has just called me to say he has to go back at 10 pm to clean up. He said he could not and the manager said well in that case if you do not come back at 10 to clean do not bother to come back at all. I would like to know if the manager can do this and what can my son do?

Asked on January 2, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Alaska

Answers:

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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Yes his manager can do this; I'm afraid that there is really nothing that our son can do. In an at will employment relationship, an employer can set the terms and conditions of the workplace much as it sees fit; this include what hours an employee works. That is unless a union agreement or employment contract provides otherwise, or if existing company policy is being violated. Also, no form of actionable discrimination can play a role in his treatment.

The fact is that, if none of the above apply to his case, your son can be fired for this reason, any reason, or no reason at all, with or without notice.


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