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Pay considerations for employees who want to work remotely

With more and more companies providing ways from employees to work remotely, what happens when an employee who typically performs in-office work, calls in sick and requests to work from home? What are the FLSA implications? The answer depends, in-part, on how the employee is classified – i.e. is the employee is exempt or non-exempt.

Pursuant to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), in general, all non-exempt employees must be paid for all hours work, and receive overtime compensation for time spent in excess of 40 hours in any work week. Thus, if a non-exempt worker calls in sick, but performs three hours of remote work, in most situations he or she must be compensated for those 3 hours. For exempt employees, the analysis is different. Generally, if an exempt employee works remotely while sick, he or she must be paid for an entire day’s work, even if he or she perform less than 8 hours.

However, caveats exist to these general rules, including whether your workplace has a policy manual in place. While employers cannot use policy manuals to skirt the law, they can set forth certain expectations employees must follow when situations such as these arise. Further, whether working at home is feasible must also be considered. Some types of jobs do not lend themselves to at home work. Additionally, the type of sickness you have may affect your ability to competently perform work at home.

If you have questions about your take home pay, or any work place policy or procedure, please contact the experienced Atlanta wage and hour lawyers at Buckley Beal, LLP for an immediate consultation.

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