Whatare an employee’s rightsregrading their work hours?

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Whatare an employee’s rightsregrading their work hours?

New Job. Employer demands that all reps work Sunday because all have the day off on Monday due to the holiday. Paid by jobs done per day, mandatory work week of 6 days with paycheck on Saturdays (so you come in that day). I also worked for up to a week unpaid training and have to buy tools of the trade from the employer – taken from my check as payback each week. Is this all legal?

Asked on September 6, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois

Answers:

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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

First of all, in most states employment relationships are what is known as "at will", and IL is no exception.  What this means is among other things is that an employer can increase/decrease salary/hours, promote/demote, and generally impose requirements as it sees fit.  You in turn can work for an employer or not, your choice. Exceptions to this would be if there is a stated company policy contrary this, or there is a union/employment agreement that does not allow for such a work schedule, or this situation has arisen due to some type of discrimination (i.e., for reasons due to your race, religion, age, disability, sex, national origin). However, to the extent that you are a non-exempt employee, you must be paid time-and-a half for any time that you put in over 40 hours.

As for having to pay for your tools, as long as this was explained to you up front, it is perfectly legal for an employer to do make this deduction.

Finally as to getting paid for your training time, if you are an hourly wage employee and you had to take this course for your job, and the course has no use for anything else in your life, the time you spent taking it is considered to be compensable work time.  Your employer has to pay you for it.  Again, if it puts you into overtime, then it has to be paid (as overtime pay).  Additionally, if such training was conducted in an off-site location, you can also be paid for your travel time. If you are not being properly paid, then you can contact your state department of labor, or contact an employment attorney for help.


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