When is an employee entitled to on-call pay?

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When is an employee entitled to on-call pay?

Our company required us to be on-call for 1 week every other 3 weeks. The company gave us a cellphone once we were on-call; our work site is about 7 miles from our home. During on-call, we can’t consume alcohol, we can’t everything we want, we need to wait and attend any trouble call during the wee hours. We are an hourly based employee. Can we get compensation on this?

Asked on September 15, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Alaska

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If an employee must be on-call outside of the work place, then they may have to be paid pay for that time. The test is whether the employee has constraints placed on them such that they have little/no control of their time; that is they cannot use such time for their own enjoyment/benefit. In that event, the employee should be paid. Generally, the more restrictions that are on an employee, the more likely it is that they should be paid.

Based on the facts as you presented, to appears that in fact you should be being paid for your on-call time. At this point you may want to contact your state's department of labor for further information, or consult with an employment law attorney.


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