What hours is my employer obligated to pay me?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What hours is my employer obligated to pay me?

I work remotely for a company hundreds of miles away. My ability to perform my job is contingent upon my employer providing ‘remote-access’ which is frequently down on their end. This prevents me from completing my hours in a timely fashion, and requires me to make up the time later. Am I entitled to be paid for hours I would normally be working when the access is down?

Asked on October 5, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You should be paid for the hours you actually work, whether they are during your normally scheduled hours or otherwise. Hourly employees are paid for the hours they work, regardless of when they are; as long as your employer is paying you for the  time you are actually working, you are being paid correctly. You are not entilted to pay for time working remotely when the server or remote access is down, since you can be doing other things (e.g. sleeping, eating, chores, shopping, socializing, even potentially work for other companies or clients) during that time, because you are remote; it is not work time, since you  can be doing other things.

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