Employee Rights: Time Off Requests for Exempt vs. Non-Exempt

How Do You Handle Time Off Requests for Employees?

Among cherished employee rights are time off, vacation time and sick time.  What do you do when an employee request time off?  Even if just for a half-day?   You are probably thinking to yourself, “That has got to be the dumbest question Haberman has ever asked.” In reality it is not quite as straight forward as you think, because of differences in exempt employees and non-exempt employees, and how you handle time off requests differs with each.

Defining the Non-Exempt vs. Exempt Employees

The confusing issue is paid time off versus non-paid time off.  With non-exempt employees, it is fairly simple.

According to the FLSA, non-exempt employees only have to be paid when they work, so they may take partial unpaid vacation days any time an employer authorizes the time. Because of this, absenteeism is kept to a minimum. Exempt employees are not so simple and how you handle their time off may run you afoul of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Basically in the private sector employers that make deductions from exempt employees’ pay for absences of less than a day may jeopardize their exempt status under the FLSA. This may expose the employer to liability for any overtime worked by the employees and even constitute a violation in paid time off laws.

Paid Time Off or Absenteeism?

Let’s review. Exempt employees are exempt from the FLSA’s minimum wage and overtime requirements because of the nature of their job duties and the fact that they are paid on a salary basis. The term “salary basis” is defined by the FLSA regulations as the payment on a weekly or less frequent basis of a predetermined amount that constitutes all or part of compensation, without reductions for variations in the quality or quantity of the work performed.

Under this definition, exempt employees generally must receive their full salary for any week in which they perform work, without regard to the number of days or hours worked.

Generally if the exempt employee has paid time off available you can require them to use vacation time for partial day absences. This may safeguard the exempt status since this does not reduce the employee’s compensation. The Department of Labor (DOL) generally has considered this type of arrangement permissible. In the comments to the current regulations (implemented in 2004) the DOL specifically restates this position acknowledging that employers may make deductions from exempt employee leave accounts without jeopardizing the employee’s exempt status. Several courts have adopted this position, although a few have disagreed. Those that disagree have determined that this practice, even without an actual loss of pay, treats the exempt employee like an hourly, nonexempt employee and, therefore, triggers loss of the exempt status. So you need to understand the state law where your business resides.

If an exempt employee has taken all their vacation time, sick time or other paid time off the FLSA regulations do allow docking of exempt employees for full day absences taken when the employee has exhausted absenteeism. Specifically, deductions are allowed for absences from work of one or more full days for personal reasons, unless those days are for sickness or disability. As an example, if the employee is absent for two full days to handle personal matters, those two days may be deducted from the employee’s salary without having an effect on the exemption. If you have a bona fide sick leave policy, plan, policy, or practice that provides compensation for loss of salary as a result of sickness or disability you may make deductions for a full day’s absence due to illness or injury. But if you had no such plan you cannot make these deductions.

How you manage and keep track of the time off, is up to you.

Understanding the FLSA Act and the Regulations for Employee Rights

According to the FLSA regulations 29 CFR 541.602(b)(2):

(2) Deductions from pay may be made for absences of one or more full days occasioned by sickness or disability (including work-related accidents) if the deduction is made in accordance with a bona fide plan, policy or practice of providing compensation for loss of salary occasioned by such sickness or disability. The employer is not required to pay any portion of the employee’s salary for full-day absences for which the employee receives compensation under the plan, policy or practice. Deductions for such full-day absences also may be made before the employee has qualified under the plan, policy or practice, and after the employee has exhausted the leave allowance thereunder. Thus, for example, if an employer maintains a short-term disability insurance plan providing salary replacement for 12 weeks starting on the fourth day of absence, the employer may make deductions from pay for the three days of absence before the employee qualifies for benefits under the plan; for the twelve weeks in which the employee receives salary replacement benefits under the plan; and for absences after the employee has exhausted the 12 weeks of salary replacement benefits. Similarly, an employer may make deductions from pay for absences of one or more full days if salary replacement benefits are provided under a State disability insurance law or under a State workers’ compensation law.

Simple Exempt Employee FLSA Time Off Solution

There is, however, a simple solution to problem of exempt employees taking half days off. JUST LET THEM DO IT. Generally they are working more than 40 hours a week anyway. (If not, then you have another issue perhaps.) So if they have an occasional request for time off in the afternoon or morning off give it to them. After all, you are most interested in their productivity not their attendance. Or at least you should be.

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Mike Haberman

Mike Haberman

Michael (Mike) D. Haberman, SPHR is a consultant, speaker, writer of HR Observations, and co-founder of Omega HR Solutions, Inc. After over 30 years in HR he got tired of the past and focuses here on the Future of HR. Connect with Mike.

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Comments

  1. Can an employer require you to use your sick/vacation time if you take a half day off during the week although you’ve accumulated more than 40 hrs in a that week? I took a half a day off but still had 42 hrs. My supervisor added 4 hrs sick time anyway which made me end up with 46 hrs with 2 hrs paid overtime. I work in the state of Texas.

    • Yes, Reggie they can. I’d rather just not use your vacation time because they just paid you an extra 2 hours when they didn’t have too. Not sure what the company policy is. . .

      JMM

      • I understand this is legal and within policy but how do you communicate to the director that this is harmful to employee morale. When employees are treated as punching a clock they will be less engaged.

        • I have a question pertaining to my husband, who is a ground driver for a major delivery company in SC. As Hurricane Irma barrels towards us, it is unlikely that he will be able to work his route this coming Monday. He has accrued 10 days of vacation and asked his supervisor if he could use one of his vacation days for Monday to supplement his paycheck. We are in the process of closing on a house and his supervisor knows this, but said he could NOT use one of his vacation days for this. My question would be is his supervisor allowed to do deny this request, even though it is very likely that none of the drivers will be able to deliver on Monday? This man is seriously ticking us off, it seems so spiteful to not let my husband use one of his EARNED vacation days, especially since they probably are not going to be able to work anyway. Thank you for any response on the matter!

        • I was recently terminated from my job at Wal-Mart and had several hours ppto left!! I explained to management that my 3 lateness were because of Uber and Lyft! But they fired me, anyway.. Now I’m homeless. What do i do?

      • Hi I have a question for you..I work 7 day’s a week.365 day’s a year.. And no off day’s and my salary pay is only 350.00..i got sick February 6th 2018..at work.. I have to be at work for 6am to 2pm.. But I’m the only one working in the kitchen at the store..so I have to wake up for 4am..and get there for 5am..to clean and prep before breakfast.. I’m The only one..I take my blood pressure meds..every morning..I went into work Tuesday.. made all my breakfast.. got a cup of coffee..my chest was hurting and burning.and pain ran down my Left arm..I called my sister.she came got me from work.. when I got to the hospital..the doctor told me i was having a light heart attack..so they transferred Me to another hospital for a heart doctor..I stayed in the hospital for observation..all kinds of test.. And I got released Wednesday at 6pm . And I took Thursday off to go get my meds From the pharmacy..the doctor gave me Thursday And Friday OFF to rest..my boss asked me Thursday was I coming Back to work Friday..I said the doctor gave me Time off to rest..he said so you need to be at work Friday morning..I went ..my thing is he isn’t calling my time in..and said I didn’t have enough hour’s in to pay my charge bill.if he would of called it in I still had 50 hour’s..and he hadn’t called anything in.. he tells me today..he just wrote Everything off.. he’s a lie..48×8=384.00 ..I only owed 265.00..but everyone else can take off and leave.. But me.what should I do quit? Because I’m not going to let no job kill me and I’m not making anything.. maybe you can tell me what I need to do.. thank you

        • First of all there are numerous jobs out there where you can get at least 2 days off a week, Whataburger in Texas pays 9 an hour and they have employee benefits, you should never, ever work that much, you need at least one day off a week, and especially sundays in case you want to go to church. Hopefully if you are getting to work at 5 to prep and clean you are getting paid for that extra hour per day. Hopefully you are getting at least 30 minutes per day for lunch. I dont understand what you mean that you didnt have enough hours in to pay your charge bill? Why do you owe him $265 dollars? Your personal happiness and well being are more important than a job that makes you work everyday. You absolutely need to quit, you need to find another job that pays at least what you are making now that gives you a couple days off a week. You need to find something that you enjoy ie if you like to read see if you can get a job at the library ie janitorial service for them or assistant to librarian , if you like nature and animals get a job a park or zoo, if you love children work at a daycare these are just some of my recommendations that dont require working everyday of your life. You are important and special and deserve good health and well being, find this new job that will make you happy and give your current employer 2 weeks notice and get your wonderful self out of that place. Your mind and body will thank you and you will feel so much better for it.
          Many blessings your way!!!!

          • I have a question, I have currently given a 3 week notice with my current employer and I am a salaried employee ten years…however, I am having issues with swelling in my knees and my doctor has written instructions for me to take time off along with physical therapy. Is my employer obligated to pay me for the time I need to take off even though it’s within the dates of my resignation?

      • I am an exempt employee and sometimes work through lunch and sometimes take 30 to 60 minutes off for lunch. Today when I was working remote and had to go to a doctors appointment during lunch my manager said that I should have requested PTO. I have worked for the company for 3?years and have never had to request PTO during lunch for any type of appointment.
        My employer told me that lunch is 30 minutes and that I need to let them know if I am going to take time off for dr appoint even if it’s during lunch and that I must request it as PTO.

        I understood that exempt employees can take them me off as long as it’s reasonable. I usually work nights and weekends and over 40 hours so trying to understand the limit of 30 minute lunch, and requirement for PTO request during lunch.

    • What about when that week got a holiday and you use pto ?? That are not going to pay you the extra hours .. not even regular time

    • So my wife put in PTO For a monday.. it was approved and DEDUCTED From her PTO Balance AvaIlAble. She was scHeduled to work OVERTIME THAT SAME WEEK ON SATURDAY. Today, one week afTEr, she checks her hours. Her boss RETURNED her pto hours and sCheduled that Saturday as a regular work day. She was expecting the extra overtime pay. Her boss altEred what was Requested and approved without notice. What can be done to change this situation?

      • pto IS NOT COUNTED AS TIME WORKED REGARDLESS. iF SHE TOOK A DAY OFF AND THE TIME WORKED IS NOT OVER 40 (UNLESS YOU’RE IN A STATE THAT HAS A DIFFERENT RULE), SHE WOULD NOT GET PAID ot REGARDLESS.

  2. This maybe a silly question, however, can an employer require a week advance notice for an appt. that is scheduled in instance that is needed, so a day off in other words?
    thank you

      • I have a somewhat complex question…
        Does an employer have to give notice (within certain time frame) if they are going to use salary continuation pay for personal leave after determining my FMLA time has been exhausted?

        I was sent out on a EAP leave with full pay. After completing a fit for duty, I was informed 40 days later that they put in a Request for FMLA leave without my consent.

  3. Does an employer have to notify you or have it stated in their PTO policy
    That they will automatically deduct PTO hours for an absence due to
    illness? Our policy states that an employee is eligible for 1 week of personal
    time off per year, but there is no mention of sick time.

    • Lisa:
      It would be nice, but most policy manual say that management reserves the right to change or ignore policy at their discretion. Does the definition of PTO include sick time? If yes then deducting it is proper. If sick time is included in something else then it should be deducted from that pool. But if PTO includes sick then it is entirely proper for it to be deducted.

      • Michael, thank you for your response. As for our policy, it simply states that Managers who qualify for 1 week (40) hours of paid personal time per year. It also states that personal time off must be requested by completing a PTO form and that personal time off will not be considered until a completed PTO electronic is turned in to the general manager. The reason for my asking is, I am planning to take 2 days off in the next couple weeks and my boss informed me that I do not have enough PTO time to cover these days. I have been employed with them for over a year now and I have never submitted one of these forms. I have missed 2 days due to illness and a total 0f 5 days (daughter in car accident) that fell between 2 work weeks 3 months after I started. My boss told me these were the reasons I lacked enough PTO, but according to my last pay stub of the year it stated I had used 24 hrs for 2012. As I have said, I have never submitted one of these forms, so I am wondering if what they are doing is allowable? Thank you so much for any assistance you can offer.

        • Unfortunately Lisa this is not covered by Federal law, it is policy and past practices driven. Under federal law they don’t have to pay you for any time off, sick, vacation, holiday or otherwise. Unless you are in a state that has passed something to that regard. But I am afraid I have no good news that they “have” to do something.

    • I’m a non exempt employee. If I work 42.5 hrs in a week and take off 5 hrs sick in that same week. Should I be paid 45 hrs at regular pay and 2.5 hrs at overtime pay? Or am I aloud to use my sick time because I have already worked my 40 hr week?

  4. If your exempt and work a 4 day work week and a holiday fall on Friday do you get another day off. We have the policy if the holiday falls on a Sat. you have Fri. off and if the holiday falls on Sunday you have Mon. off – so what happens when it falls on a Friday?

    • Debbie:
      How often is this going to happen that you need to be worried about it? Exempt employees are supposed to work whatever hours are required in return for that constant salary. You are mixing a non-exempt mentality with exempt situation. They do not work together.

      • I would imagine I’m an exempt worker paid salary out on sick leave will I still get paid currently under Dr’s care and I believe they want to fire me further more they said my Dr’s excuses weren’t acceptable not enough info on the excuse aren’t my medical records private

  5. Michael,
    I have a 40hr exempt person who works 4-10s typically. One week, he worked 5 days and now wants to only work 3 days this week. Thoughts?

    • Jim
      Without knowing the entire back story this is a little difficult to answer, but I will give it a go. My first reaction is the guy needs an attitude adjustment. If he is a clock watcher and works only 40 hours then he does not understand the concept of being an exempt employee where, in return for a paycheck that never goes down you work whatever hours are necessary to get the work done. So he had to work an extra day to get work done, tough! I would prefer to have some dedicated to doing the job and does not pay attention to the clock.

      In return for having that type of dedication you as a manager also have to have a change in attitude. If you have someone that works hard, works extra hours as needed and they get their work done, then if they come and ask for some consideration in taking a bit of time off then you give it to them without taking away vacation or PTO.

      But if you have a culture where everyone watches the clock, only puts in their 40 hours you will not get to that point. You may need to start over. Hire someone who is interested in the work and not just the paycheck.

      • I typically work around 30 hours two 36 hours per week. However, my employer says that if I’m going to take a vacation I have to take 8 hours of vacation for the days that I’m going to take off. Is this the way it should be? I live in Oregon

  6. Hello Sir….I happen to stumble upon your site looking for answers to some questions that may be simple to some but difficult for me. I am in my first managerial position. I was sent to supervisors training 101. During that training I found out that I was exempt…even my own supervisor didnt know that I was exempt so he didnt know to tell me. I was told that if you are a manager of 3 more and your duties call for decison making responsibililites amongst other duties, than you’re exempt. I do understand that being exempt means you are more bound to your work and not the clock. So this leads to more than one question:
    1. Is it possible to be exempt and not salary?

    • Ernest, sorry for the delay in the response. It is possible but very rare. Engineers for example are sometimes paid on an hourly basis. The law does however generally require an exempt employee to be paid on a salary basis make of at least $455 per week.

  7. I’m an exempt employee…Can my company require me to use my PTO for partial days off?

    Say I take an hour or two off to go to a dentist appointment or volunteer for my kids school. My company wants me to deduct those hours from my PTO balance. Is this legit?

      • So what you are saying is that he takes 2 hrs off and they charge him for 8? Do they have to pay him for the 6 extra hrs (total of 48)?

          • Hiii.. I need to have surgery on my ears because I am losing my hearing. I have been with my company for almost a year. I have never asked for time off. Now I need a week for this surgery and my boss rejected my request. She said I cannot ask for unpaid leave time. I have 16 hours of PTO time. I used to work part time, so I didn’t collect enough. But is this legal? I really need this surgery. Also, does this mean she can keep me from going on my year vacation because I won’t have any PTO time for it? IM very confused by all of this. Thank you in advance.

  8. I have a question:
    Do I have to tell my employer why or the reason why I request a day off? Or if I decide not to work a day and call my employer to abreast them of my absence prior to shift, do I have to tell them why?

  9. Joe:
    Certainly consistency with pay practices is easier to communicate and understand. However, conditions can vary from working group to working group. In order to make sure you manager is not creating something that goes against policy I would check with the HR department.

  10. My boss told me today, after I had already been there for 6 months, that we are only allowed 10 days off a year. Apparently this included requests off and call outs. I guess I am at my 10 days already because I have a baby who has had doctor appointments, as well as appointments for me. She told me that I cannot call out or request off any days for the rest of the year. I have appointments coming up and my son’s 1st birthday. Then she told me that Dr notes count as excused absences (after I had already accrued my 10 days). Then when I emailed my boss telling her that I can get doctor’s notes for appointments that I have in the next few months, she emailed back saying:

    “Just to clearify what was ment on a Dr’s note.

    A yearly check up or baby’s appointment is one hour max. A doctors note is saying you are not able to work. The only time excusable is the actual appointment time not the rest of the day.”

    Am I being ridiculous!? 1 hour max?

  11. I am an employee of the State of California. I have requested a 5 day vacation, 3 months in advance for late August. My supervisor has denied my request. The supervisor is new on the job and simply has no idea what the workload might be in 3 months. Based on historical data provided by myself and co-workers we have attempted to demonstate that the work load is not significantly different during this time period. Is there any recourse in a situation like this?

  12. Dan:
    The only recourse is to go to your HR department or to your supervisor’s boss. There is not going to be any regulation that covers that situation. Any recourse you may have will be particular to the state.

    Sorry I cannot help you.

  13. I am an exempt employee…..If my employer wants to have our floors waxed during the work week, can she MANDATE that we take a vacation day?

    • Let me also add that we are working “summer hours” which consist of 4 -10 hour days with no lunch and off on Friday. This week since the 4th falls on a thursday, we get a holiday (we only get 8 hours on holidays) that was built in the calender and then our boss is telling us we cannot work on Friday, instead we HAVE to take vacation day to make up the 2 hours we lost because of the holiday.??

      • Jennifer:
        if you are truly an exempt employee then you have to be paid for the entire week regardless of how many hours you work. There is no losing two hours. If you are nonexempt then that is a different matter.

        • I work at least 55 hours a week and travel often for my job, yet if I miss a half day I get docked PTO which makes no sense because even when missing an entire day of work, I have a 16 day the following so how could they take PTO from me. I feel cheated.

  14. Dear Michael,

    I have been faced with this situation a number of times and clearly, I’ve made the wring decisions! So, I am asking the expert!
    An employee that started esactly 7 business days ago, sent me an email requesting two days off and having to leave early for 4 days in a row, all within the next two months. Aside from that, the days that he is requesting interfere with our end of month process (financial) and everyone has been made aware that no vacations or personal time is allowed during those crucial times of the month. He was a temporary employee for about 2 months with perfect attendance, and he is extremely capable at his job, great personality, etc. I just don’t know how to respond without sounding too harsh. Please advise….thank you!!!!

  15. Where can I get similar information applicable to full time, NON-exempt employees?

    Maybe you can answer it here..
    I am paid hourly, I work full time and accrue vacation. We have NO written or set policy regarding any other PTO (sick/personal) and that works both for and against the employees in that nothing is required to be paid, nor can any limit really be enforced. A salaried, non-exempt employee takes time off for sick days, doctor’s appointments or medical leave and gets paid 100%, no questions asked. The time for the doctors appointments is not deducted from her paycheck, nor is she required to make up any missed hours.

    I am an hourly, non-exempt employee and I do get paid sick days, but I do not get paid for the hours I miss for doctors appointments. I am fine with not being paid for that time, but is it standard or allowed that they require me to work extra hours to make up for what I missed? I have to leave 2 hours early one day to see a specialist and they want me to work 2 extra hours throughout the rest of the week so my hours total my standard work week. It seems reasonable, however this is not the case for the other non-exempt employees. Also, I am paid by exactly what is on my timesheet. Another non-exempt employee turns in time sheets, but she is paid a salary. I don’t know what to think…

    • Lindsay:
      It is perfectly fine for them to ask/require you make up time missed. As to how consistently the rule is applied that is certainly a potential issue. If you feel that it is being applied differently because of your race, religion, age, gender, etc. then that is discrimination. If it is not applied to one of those situations then there is nothing wrong, it is just not good management.

      • As a non exempt employee – does a company have the right to use my vacation time (against my will) to fill in for the 3 hours of my typical 40 hr work week? Thanks for your help!

  16. I have workrd for 3yrs at my place.but thise yr i requeted time off for 2month . to go to africa which is my home ,But when i got back my employee told to that am not having my job back,so my quostion is is that fair .beacuase they gave to me .ple help……

  17. I submited 1 day vacation request a day before the vacation day. My boss approved. However, HR dep says that I have to give 45 days prior notice. Is it legal?

  18. Can you explain the benefits, to an employee, to being salary exempt vs non-exempt. Where I am it seems there is no difference except that we work overtime at no pay where the “hourly” people get paid for it. I’ve been SN-E at all my previous jobs in my field (mechanical design) but I am salary at the place I am at now.

  19. can a salaried person elect to take a day off with out pay eventhough they have PTO – they just wanted to “save” it? Does this compromise exempt status?

  20. As an exempt employee I went home Wednesday with Pink Eye No problem I did not want to infect other people. I went to a clinic received Anti Biotic Drops and was told I would be infectious for 24 hours after taking medication. I stayed home Thursday, by Thursday evening all symptoms were gone. I returned to work Friday and was sent home being told I had to get a doctors release to return to work. (this is not in our Employee handbook) and I know this has not been the case with others who have come back to work. I got the doctors note even though it was stated on my doctors bill that I would be fine in 24hours. My Question isshould I be paid without having to use vacation time for the Friday they sent me home I say unfairly?

  21. I have accrued 180 hrs of paid sick time. I hurt my back and need minor back surgery which requires 2 weeks off work and 6 weeks of light duty. Can I use my accrued paid sick time with FMLA

  22. Can an employer force hourly workers to “make up day” if I were to call out on a weekend my employer says if I call out on a sat. the following sat I would need to make up that day (we are “on” every other weekend as per the schedule)

    • Sure they can Matt. It is their business and work needs to get done. The only obligation they have is to make sure they are paying you correctly for the time worked. But they are certainly free to make you work whatever hours they want you to work, at least under federal law. There are some states that may have different laws and some industries such as trucking and airlines where a certain amount of rest has to be included.

  23. Our employers require that we ask for our vacations for the next year every October. For example in October of 2012 I had to submit my requests for my vacation plans for 2013. I submitted for a week in May and 2.5 weeks in November. They were approved. I then planned and booked my vacations as I was approved for them. I recently went on my 2.5 week vacation. When I got back I was pulled into my managers office and told that I did not have enough PTO to cover my time off (I was aware of that, I was 16 hours short. I just figured I wouldn’t get paid for those two days) and that it was policy that if you didn’t have enough PTO to cover your whole vacation you had to cut it short even though it was pre approved over a year ago. My question is that can an employer take your vacation back if you don’t have enough PTO even after you were given permission to take it if they make you ask for I so far in advance? How can one determine that in a years time they wouldn’t have gotten sick at least once? Lets be clear….I was NOT demanding to be paid for those two days. But can an employer “take back” or tell you to cut short your vacation once its been approved? Does approval for time off count as a “promise”?

  24. I work for a company that will not allow me to use my sick/PTO hours if I do not call in 24 hours before my scheduled work time. Example, I fell ill on Sunday at 3:00 PM. I called my supervisor at 6:00 PM Sunday night and told her I was feeling well and may not be into work the next day. I did not work the next day (Monday). I called my supervisor at 7:00 the next morning and told her I would not be at work. She informed me since I did not make the call 24 hours prior to my clock in time I would not be able to use my sick day. Therefore, even though I have sick days she would not allow me to use them. The company I work for does not enforce this policy with all departments There are a few departments in the company (I know for a fact that does not follow the “rules”). As a matter of fact my department did not enforce this rule until recently. I have worked for this company for 5 years. I have ALWAYS been allowed to use my sick/PTO hour anytime with or with out a 24 hour notice.
    How could I use my sick days in the past and not be able to use them now? I have not changed positions or moved from another job.
    I would like to know what I should do.

  25. I need help in bringing up something to my employer but was hoping to get more proof of it. I work for a hospital 12hr shifts, when I get placed on call by the hospital they use my accrued days to pay me. Does that sound right? I can understand them using my days if I called and asked to be placed on call but not when they place me on call. Also, with working the night shift shouldn’t the weekends be counted as Friday and Saturday?
    Thank you for you help

  26. Olivia:
    I am not sure I can help you. The FLSA allows employers to define the workweek in a variety of ways. The law also only requires that you be compensated for all hours worked. On-call time is most often defined and set up by the policies of the employer. On top of that laws will vary from state to state. If you feel you are being incorrectly paid the only thing I can suggest is that you contact the Department of Labor for your state.

    • I also work for a hospital and am a single mom with elementary age child. Was notified the day of a snowstorm that we will not be paid nor can we use BTO time if we can’t make it to work…snow, wreck, sickness, child, anything. Is this legal?

  27. This blog is getting long. I don’t know if this was asked/answered or not so I will just ask. I am a salary exempt employee in WI. The owner of our business informed us that he is shutting down the plant for Christmas 2014 on Wednesday through Sunday (our holiday is Thursday only). We were also informed that we would have to take PTO (Personal Time Off) for Wednesday and Friday. FYI the company policy is that if you have no PTO and you take an unpaid day before or after a holiday (Monday if the holiday falls on a Friday and vice versa) you don’t get paid for the holiday. My question is that, if the plant has a mandatory shut down can salary personnel be told to save and use two of our PTO days for that? I thought if the shutdown was mandatory that salary personnel were paid.

    • Brad:
      The answer to your question is “Yes”. The can do that. An employer is not prohibited, after giving vacation time, from later requiring that such vacation time be taken on a specific day. Employers that close their offices during inclement weather or other disasters can ask exempt employees to take vacation or leave but cannot insist on leave without pay.

      • “insist on leave w/out pay” unless you have no PTO left, right. If I am out of PTO then they can dock me pay even if it is a mandatory shutdown?

          • “portion of the week” did you mean portion of a day? I was under the impression that if I have no PTO left, came in sick on Wednesday, left early and called in on Thursday (all day off) that they had to pay me for Wednesday but could dock me a day’s pay for Thursday. Thereby getting paid for 4 days that week.

  28. Brenda:
    Yes they can. It may in their interest to know, given circumstances that have accumulated from previous incidents. Most companies in my experience don’t really push the issue unless they have a valid reason to do so. You also don’t have to answer, but there may be consequences to that.

  29. Hi-
    I am an exempt employee (salaried) professional. There is an expected productivity of so many visits (patient visits) per week. If the company is unable to provide me with patients to see, or I have done all I can to contact and make those visits per week, and were unable due to patient availability, etc. can the company use my PTO time to make up the difference??

  30. Hello, I have been out of PTO for quite some time now. I am an exempt employee. I have a medical issue that has caused me to miss intermittent days at work( never a full week) and my employer is constantly docking my salary for the pAst 6 month. For example I will have out patient surgery on a Friday and be back by Tuesday and my check will be docked those three days. I have not been paid my full salary in the past 6 months! Can they do that as long as I work a portion of the week? Thanks for your help!

  31. I am an exempt employee in the retail arena. While understanding that I was hired to be available 24/7 my physical involvement was to be Monday through Friday for no less than 10 hours a day or 50 hours per week. When satisfactorily staffed, evenings and weekends were to be my free time. A new directive has just been given that a phone call will be made and logged, seven days a week during the evening to verify understanding of a long-standing legal and safety issue. My question is; are we being asked to accomplish this task within legal rights or would you suggest that I am disgruntled over a request that exceeds the scope of the job/pay arrangement to which I initially agreed? Your perspective would be appreciated.

  32. I’ve been trying to find an answer for this:
    Can an employer limit the amount of UNPAID TIME OFF an employee can request? I live in WA, and my boss has said we’re only allowed one week of time off in a year. Unpaid, not medical. Example: You went to your sister’s wedding in January for a few days, and then in March you went to a concert a few cities over. Now this summer you can’t ask for any time off.
    Is that legal?

  33. My normal work week is M-F 8 hrs each day and I have 15 vacation days (120 hrs) per year. I put in for 16 hrs vacation 3 months ago and was approved. Due to my job load, I worked 10 hrs each day (approved) on Mon, Tues, and Wednsesday and took the remainder 2 days off as vacation. My HR manager put in my 2 days vacation but the Corporate office only paid me for 1 full day and a partial day for the second day to equal 40 hours that week. Is this legal to reduce one of my days when i am entitled to 8 hours and still have 10 days vacation remaining this year?

  34. I work in a call centre and I took half day off my boss told me my attendance bonus will be taken away. Is that fair because I did attend half a day?

  35. I transferred from State to another with my company, I had to use PTO time for the move, is this correct?

  36. I have a question regarding PTO in CA. If a company gives employees 10days PTO a year and an employee who has hours accrued calls out for a day or more, can the employer automatically apply accrued PTO for the day(s) missed?

  37. Hello i had an emergency surgery leave and was out off work for 1 week. Before this I had submitted a request time off for 1 day, a month a go. the date off is coming this Tuesday and my boss gave me a copy of the request back saying NO TOO MUCH WORK TO BE DONT DUE TO SURGERY LEAVE. can he do that? Is this legal? I asked for it in advanced and just before the date they decide to say no.. I understand we got behind at work but like I told my boss I also lost a weeks pay I didn’t meant to get sick and go to the ER.. can you please help

  38. If my employer deducted 1/2 day of pay for a doctor’s appt and later another 1/2 day of pay to attend a funeral after my PTO time ran out – did this void my status as an exempt employee? Also if my job description states that I am non-exempt, can they consider me an exempt employee?

  39. Hello! I have a question regarding collecting unemployment. I’ve been working for this company for over seven months, and do not have any paid time off benefits. I just took four days off as my first vacation since I arrived. I had already mentioned to them that I had a wedding in June that I could attend in tandem with a work education function that would require a week off. I requested the time off well in advance, but was told I would not have my job when I returned. This company encourages its managerst to pursue outside opportunities that enhance their education and understanding of their work function, and has committed to supporting a specific goal the employee sets for the course of that year (this event I would attend falls directly in line with the goal I chose). Can I qualify for unemployment if my job is not available to me when I return from this seminar? Thank you!

  40. I am an exempt physician, and we notified that our company is changing the PTO policy such that if we take an hour or two off for an appointment, child’s school event, etc., (anything they consider to be nonurgent), they will instead require us to take the entire 8h day PTO for that, even if we are ready, able, and willing to work the rest of the day. Is this legal? The other interesting parts of this new rule are that they can individually evaluate each time-off request and decide whether they will be allowed to leave without taking PTO at all or force them to take the entire 8h, which seems to be opening themselves up for a discrimination suit when the policy isn’t being uniformly applied to everyone….

    • The practice is legal, however, it is poor HR practice in my mind. This paragraph helps explain this:
      Generally if the exempt employee has paid time off available you can require them to use vacation time for partial day absences. This may safeguard the exempt status since this does not reduce the employee’s compensation. The Department of Labor (DOL) generally has considered this type of arrangement permissible. In the comments to the current regulations (implemented in 2004) the DOL specifically restates this position acknowledging that employers may make deductions from exempt employee leave accounts without jeopardizing the employee’s exempt status. Several courts have adopted this position, although a few have disagreed. Those that disagree have determined that this practice, even without an actual loss of pay, treats the exempt employee like an hourly, nonexempt employee and, therefore, triggers loss of the exempt status. So you need to understand the state law where your business resides.

      • The company I work for in California does the same thing to Salary Exempt Employees. We are required to take off a full day, to get paid 8 hours PTO / Vacation, even if we only need a couple of hours or less. You mentioned that this is legal depending on which state the business resides. Can you tell me if this is legal in California? The company I work for is located in other states, so would this have an affect on how the law is applied?

  41. I am a supervisor in a call center and I am considered an exempt employee. If I come in to work 6 hours and need to leave before completing my shift should I automatically be paid for the remaining of the day or is the company allowed to use my pto hours? Would using my pto hours void me as an exempt employee?

    • The best answer is this paragraph:
      Generally if the exempt employee has paid time off available you can require them to use vacation time for partial day absences. This may safeguard the exempt status since this does not reduce the employee’s compensation. The Department of Labor (DOL) generally has considered this type of arrangement permissible. In the comments to the current regulations (implemented in 2004) the DOL specifically restates this position acknowledging that employers may make deductions from exempt employee leave accounts without jeopardizing the employee’s exempt status. Several courts have adopted this position, although a few have disagreed. Those that disagree have determined that this practice, even without an actual loss of pay, treats the exempt employee like an hourly, nonexempt employee and, therefore, triggers loss of the exempt status. So you need to understand the state law where your business resides.

  42. I’ve been working for a company for 25 year’s as a salaried employee. I’ve just been notified that I’m a non-exempt salaried employee and starting July 1st I need to start using a time clock. I’m a very dedicated employee and most work weeks involve way more than 40 hours a week. I also travel often and work Saturday and Sundays. I have a few questions……I’ve been reading a lot about the FLSA law and it states that we have to be paid overtime for any hours that exceed 40 hours in a given week. Our employer is saying we can get comp time or be sent home early even if our works isn’t completed. Can I demand overtime pay? Can I ask for overtime pay for the pass several year’s that I wasn’t aware that I was entitled to? Also, what about travel? Does my work hours start and finish from the time I leave my home until I return. I can be gone for up to five days and work weekends.

  43. I work for a company in Pennsylvania and a salaried employer non exempt cause I punch a timeclock. we have company holidays and I happened to take a vacation the week of May 25-31 which included Memorial Day which is a company holiday we are opened ( if I would have worked holiday I would have been paid time & 1/2) but it fell in my vacation. My question is if I had a full week vacation 40 hrs with a holiday in it, shouldn’t I get paid for the holiday (straight time/holiday pay) and only have to use 32 hrs vacation? or would I use 40 hrs vacation and lose my holiday??? Please advise. thanks

    • There is no Federal law that requires you be paid any holiday or vacation pay. There may be some state law in PA, but you will have to contact someone who knows that law. Common practice in most companies in the situation you described would take four days of vacation and pay one day holiday pay.

  44. I work for a company in California with a policy that ALL employees (exempt & non-exempt) may not get paid for Holiday pay if they are out (due to illness or other personal reasons) the day before and/or after the holiday (except for a scheduled vacation). We have an exempt employee that was sick on a Thursday and Friday was a holiday. She was paid PTO for Thursday, after that will be out of PTO balance. Can we dock this exempt employee for that Friday holiday since it is written in our handbook? Please advise.

    • I checked with a friend who knows California law. Here is what she said:
      Can’t dock wages/salary of an exempt employee for a missing day if they worked any day that week. You can dock a PTO bank but if there is none left you cannot dock pay. It is a discipline issue not a docking issue.

      Right in line with my thoughts.

      • Thank you for the response. To add on to my question then, since the employee has exhausted her PTO and we shut down for one week during Christmas holiday… and since she will not be working for the whole week, I am assuming we can dock her wages then for the time during shutdown, is this correct? (Holidays will be paid but for the rest of the days, employees are asked to either use PTO or no pay).

        • You are correct. If she does not work you do not have to pay. But working can be as simple as answering an email or taking a call. So you have to control that in some manner.

      • HI Mike,

        How does the recommendation that “can’t dock wages/salary of an EE for missing a day if they worked any day of that week” reconcile with your article comment that “If an exempt employee has taken all their vacation time, sick time or other paid time off the FLSA regulations do allow docking of exempt employees for full day absences taken when the employee has exhausted absenteeism”?

        Looking for some clarity. Thanks.

  45. I am exempt employee with no PTO until one year of work. I am at 4 months and needed to take some days before the 4th of July (company paid holiday per offer letter and handbook) and requested these dates in May. I understood they would be unpaid,..however, the day before I left (monday) I was told I WOULD NOT Be paid for the holiday now because I am taking unpaid day off before holiday! This was not told to me when I requested it in May, it is not in the company handbook, nor on the form I used to request unpaid days. I did work on Monday – can they take away my holiday pay?? Also, my coworker did this over memorial day and I believe she was paid, she did not get any “notice” from anyone about this “policy” it seems as if it was started with my request! The other (younger) co worker has already had many “allowances” for many things as well so I am not sure if this is discriminatory, etc. This “policy” does not seem to be consistent throughout organziation. I asked someone who had been there two years and she was not aware of it. After I returned, i questioned this policy some more as it did not seem right and I was told that from now until the holidays, he will not “allow” any more unpaid days. Without any vacations or PTO, I am not sure what that means when something does come up that I need to miss work for but that’s another issue…main problem is should they pay me for 4th of July Holiday

    • Under the Federal law there is no obligation to pay anyone holiday pay. That is dictated by company policy. If you feel you are being treated differently due to your age that is a different issue. Talk to your HR representative to make sure what the policy and practice is.

  46. I am an exempt employee with a job description of 40-60 hours per work week. I do accumulate PTO. I also, some weeks work 6 days a week. By my employer, I am required to be in the office Monday – Friday and execute my event on Saturday, with only Sundays off. Can my employer tell me to use my PTO to have a Monday off following a Monday -Saturday work week?

  47. One of our employees who is on salary injured themselves off of the job. In the last two weeks they worked only 5 hours. Are we required to pay them for the full 80 hours?

    • Brooke, the first question is are they exempt? Salary is just a method of payment and not an official classification. Next question, is that five hours spread over both weeks, i.e., did they work 2.5 hours each week.? If they are exempt and they worked some each week then the answer is yes, you have to pay them. If they worked that five hours in one week but not the other then they have to be paid for the one week, not the other. But you also can require them to use PTO. FMLA could also be an issue as could be thevADA.

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  49. I am an exempt employee in the state of PA who accumulates 120 hours of PTO a year. If at the end of the year, you have over 120 hours, you lose those extra hours. After four years of working with the company, at the end of 2013, I had 188 hours of PTO left, (therefore I lost 68 hours at the end of the year). I have recently come to be under new management – both my manager (who started in Sept 2013) and my director (who started in May of 2014). My past director had a very lenient PTO policy in which if we ended up working on our vacation because we were needed, or worked on your day out sick, he would normally tell us to not put those hours in Lawsons – we, the employees, are responsible for tracking both sick and PTO hours in Lawsons, and the manager or director then signs off/approves our time sheets every two weeks. This past fourth of July, I took PTO on Monday, the 7th, and then when I was needed at the hospital to make a decision to put my grandmother on hospice, I was asked to put a half day of family sick time in (worked 6am to 11am and then again 7pm to 10pm anyway though. Further, I have activity logs proving that I worked 6 hours on the 4th and another 5 hours on the 5th). However, even though I put 5 hours sick time in, and 8 hours holiday time in, I inadvertently forgot to put in 8 hours of PTO for that Monday I took off. My new manager then took the liberty of going through my personal calendar, (which she forced me to share in February of 2014 – but I have never kept it up to date, as we have a team calendar available to everyone that should show where we are), and went back all the way to June of 2013 to try and find discrepancies between the time I put in, and what I have on my PERSONAL calendar – (which I have also always used to track my ex’s vacations with my daughter, as well as my mother’s vacations because I need to find another babysitter on those weeks). She then notified me that her analysis concluded that I only put in 85 hours of PTO, and I will have 100 hours of PTO deducted from my bank next payroll – which is actually saying that she believes I failed to enter 168 hours – OVER FOUR WEEKS, this analysis is also saying that in the past year, I have taken 6 weeks of vacation – from June of 2013 until now – which there is absolutely NO WAY I came anywhere close to taking that much vacation. I took 3 weeks of vacation in that time period – I am positive of that fact – and that’s being generous, because I know at least oneof those three weeks, I put in at least 40 hours. I did forget to put the last week of Dec 2013 in, but I didn’t think it mattered since I was losing 68 hours that very same week anyway for extra hours that won’t carry over. She also then wrote me up saying I was “negligent in putting in my hours properly.” I asked for the exact days she felt that I didn’t put in appropriately and they refused to tell me and further threatened me to go back to 2010 which they are sure would put me in the negative. I also asked for the method they used to determine whether or not I actually took PTO that day and they refused to tell me how they did that. So I personally went through my calendar and any day that said vacation on there that I knew was not one of the weeks or days I took off, yet had it there for reasons mentioned previously, I ran activity logs (I’m a clinical analyst so I can run reports on myself showing all activity done and printed out all emails sent for those days which proved I worked way over 8 hours on most, if not all, the days that I had put PTO on it for. Then, not only would they not tell me their method, but they refused to look at my activity logs, emails, or VPN logon records proving that I was working. Is this legal to do? This will be the first year that they are paying out extra vacation time, and I find it quite strange that they would deduct time, especially considering how much I work and have always been viewed as working long hours by my customers and coworkers. In my opinion, the record should be what is in Lawsons, not what is on my personal calendar that I have never had to share with anyone previously. This all seems very unfair – I’m not the type to sue, but honestly, I want to find a new job and sue them for this because I have never felt so devalued and taken advantage, and even stolen from, by an employer throughout my working history.

  50. I am an salaried employee that currently has 160 hours of vacation hours (I have separate sick hours) banked. At the end December I can only roll over 65 hours of vacation to the next year. I have been told by my supervisor that he doesn’t want me to take any more vacation time this year. (Incidental, but my last vacation was at the end of February.) Can I be “forced” to loose my vacation time?

  51. On a federal basis there is no requirement that your employer provide you with any vacation. That may be different depending on what state you are in based on state law. Regardless it is not good employee relations, so I would check with your HR department and definitely check out your state regulations. If you have any questions call your state Department of Labor.

  52. State of Colorado – Company changed the vacation rules for exempt employees. The change allows for partial vacation time to be used to fulfill a shift requirement. For example, if my shift is 9 hours and I work 5, I enter 4 hours vacation. We used to just enter the 5 hours worked. There was no need to account for the remaining shift since that was a benefit of being exempt (paid for the day when partially worked the shift). Does this constitute a change of exempt status since we need to account for every hour of our shift? Thanks!

  53. Can an employer require that you use your paid time off accrual for holidays that they make you take off?

  54. I currently work as a listed “exempt” employee. My boss deducts pay for any time you are off even an hour during the day. She also has furloughed us and required we come in and work for no pay but “comp” time promised in future dates. My boss also takes anything over 40 hours off of our hourly employees and pays them straight time and puts those hours towards the following week. My boss also shuts down our facility during the holidays but requires us to work two days out of the week and then take the rest non paid (exempt employees). These are just a few of the many things that go on in our facility. Don’t even get me started on what is done for jury duty! This is a non profit organization run by a board of directors. Concern has been expressed to those individuals but nothing is ever done about it. What recourse do we as employees have and how would we go about fixing our situation?

  55. Hi Mike. Thanks for such a great article! My question is whether a non-exempt employee can be mandated to take a day of vacation each week because the employer wants to lessen his liability over a period of time before terminating the employee. Is this legal?

    • Hey Michelle, that is a new one. From a Federal level the answer is yes, after all they don’t have to even pay you the vacation. On a State level that will differ depending on the state. You need to check with someone in your state that will know.

  56. I cannot for the life of me find the answer to this question. My offer letter as an admissions sales rep states me as an “exempt employee” yet I submit a time card am paid hourly and qualify for OT. I also can accrue pto and sick days.. So basically I am a non-exempt employee, but am documented as exempt on paper for some reason. Now my company is based in Indiana yet the office site I work at and report to daily is in Massachusetts. Anyway, the storms here have warranted government shut downs and my work site has shut down for tomorrow (they shut today too) but my manager has said to “work from home” and if we can’t we use our PTO because in Indiana…where our company originates from is still business as usual. Getting out job done from home is nearly impossible to do.. My question is why am I not entitled to paid days off if I cannot physically go to my place of employment and listed on paper as “exempt” yet paid hourly? Either I’m misclassified or they have some loop hole going and I’m simply trying to understand my rights through these weather storms… Best!

    • Emily, it sounds like there is a mistake in your classification. It also sounds like your manager doesn’t understand the PTO policy. If you were a nonexempt employee they would not have to pay you unless you either worked from home or used PTO. If you are an exempt employee you have to get paid for the entire week regardless. I would check with someone in HR to get the answer.

  57. I am an exempt employee and just recently received my first years employee evaluation after being with the company for 1 1/2yrs. It is a small company and I have known the owner for several years, in fact he begged me to leave the job that I was at, at the time to come work for him and said that my hourly rate was of no matter although I told him I did not think he could afford my current rate. I have always received rave reviews on my annual evals from other employers, but this time, I received an evaluation that indicated I needed “further improvement” in multiple areas, which my immediate supervisor who went over it with me stated the owner had a hand in it and that she did not agree with it and even encouraged me to respond. I work from home as a nurse case manager and have a multitude of tasks on my plate. I was told that I needed to work until all the work was done, without knowing all that I actually do on a daily basis. I don’t mind doing some overtime, but the overtime that would require me to get all accomplished would take me in to the wee hours of the night. It was also indicated that I did not show initiative, willingness to perform additional tasks, or willingness to help others in the workplace. I helped and actually DID create multiple forms and processes continuing to be used, not only for my group, but others we contract with, for mine and other case managers daily duties. I have trained each oncoming case manager, in person, and online/over the phone and even when I am overwhelmed I have helped everyone in my office. I am constantly interrupted throughout my day because I was designated the “operator” for my office and I am the “go to guy” for just about everything AND when my supervisor is unavailable. I took off a total of 1 week of PTO, a day here and a day there over the first year, all prior approved and was later reprimanded on employee eval for taking too much time off as it affected my productivity. I have been the person to double check for others’ mistakes to make sure things are done properly. I have not had ONE write up for poor performance. The owner has actually farmed out a multitude of the work to the Phillipines, stating that he can pay three of them to the price of one of us. I feel that I am being unfairly targeted due to how much I make and is trying to put it on paper.

  58. I am an exempt employee an generally average more than 40 hours per week. I just happen to be looking back to some of my times and noticed what could be a problem. On a particular week I had worked 3 days for a total of 30.05 hours. For the other 2 days, I was charged with 16 hours of PTO, but my pay amount on my paycheck did not change.

    My question is did I just lose 6.05 hours of PTO without being compensated for it and is this legal. Please let me know where I can find details about this to present to my employers.

    This may be a simple oversight but I would like to be ready for them if it is not.

  59. IM AN EXEMPT EMPLOYEE, MY QUESTIONS IS IF YOUR OFF A DAY OR YOUR AN HOUR LATE CAN THEY DOCK YOUR PAY OR MAKE YOU COME IN ON YOUR OFF DAY OFF? I THOUGH THAT EXEMPT MEANT THAT YOU WERE TO GET PAID AN AMOUNT ACCORDING TO JOB DISCRIPTION, BECAUSE ONE DAY YOU MIGHT WORK 14 HOURS AND THE NEXT ONLY 9 HOURS, WE ARE ON A SCHEDULE AND WORK THE REQUIRED HOURS (45+) I GUESS MY QUESTION IS CAN THEY WRITE YOU UP FOR BEING 5 TO TEN MINUTES LATE AND CAN THEY MAKE YOU MAKE UP IF YOUR GONE LONGER THAN AN HALF HOUR FOR LUNCH SAY 10 -15 MINUTES , OR IF YOU LEAVE 1/2 HOUR OR HOUR DO YOU HAVE TO MAKE IT UP?

    • Teresa, they cannot dock your pay. However, if they want to be picky and discipline you by writing you up, they are free to do that. It is not good HR, but writing someone up is not illegal.

  60. I am a non-exempt employee. If my employer has approved me 40 hour of time off but I do not have enough PTO to cover all of it can it effect my benefits other then not being paid?

  61. Do you have any thoughts what must an employer do so that it can legally say “You are not permitted to do any work” to an exempt employee? An exempt employee did not come into the office over 3 weeks during a period of illness eventually resulting in surgery and recovery time. He demanded not to be charged PTO (sick or vacation) for any day because he answered emails and phone calls each day. He touched the wall. By the strictest of definitions he did not take one or more days off. By our definition he wasn’t available, and no staffer or manager reached out to him to allow for recovery (and to not create work). Could it have been as simple (aggressive it may be) as turning off his phone and email to prevent that type of work? Thank you.

    • Sorry for the delayed response. Short of cutting off his email account and phone account there is not much else you can do. Of course you can explain to him that legally you don’t have to offer vacation. I would shut him off.

  62. Well Rhonda there is nothing that I know of that would prevent them. But there is also no reason I can think of for doing such a write up. Sounds like they may be trying to build a case for some reason.

  63. Here’s the problem with Exempt employment in a lot of companies.
    My first year at Current Inc I worked about 2600 hours.
    The following two years I worked 3200 hours per year..
    The following years since I have been working roughly 2400-2600 hours ..Lately I feel burned out and am just tired of the work. I’m on-call 24x7x365.. Escalation point of contact. During certain testing runs we work 70+ hours, we work a minimum of one extra Saturday per month where it will be at least a 12 hour day. At no time is there any mention of comp time, and the very notion of “a check that never shrinks” is a joke. Had i received overtime pay for the past 10 years I’d be done working, as I would have easily doubled my salary by now. I am expected to be at my desk from a certain time until at least a certain time. New policies are being pushed where any time off requires vacation or PTO. In other words, Dr appointments and things of that nature will require I take my PTO!? At one point does it become advantageous to the employee to be in an exempt status? Is it when your company demands no less than 45 hours per week, or is it when your company forces you to work 6 days a week?

  64. So I’ve been employed for about 8 years now at the same place (collision shop) and only have 8 days of vacation/pto. I went on vacation in April and burned 5 days. I now need unexpected surgery. Not knowing how long I will be disabled. Could be a week maybe two or less I don’t know. With only having 3 days left I can’t afford not getting a paycheck what do I do?

  65. Can an employer take future days from your next years vacation if you take four days off WITHOUT PAY when you baby is born? That is happening to my son. He has not yet been there quite a year so he only had one personal day and used it. Then he took the other four days off without pay. They are telling him that they will be taking four hours for every day that he took with out pay from his vacation next year.

  66. If you are required to work a 40 hour week and you only work 28.05 hours can your employer legally take 16 hours of your PTO rather than the 11.95 to make a full 40 hour week. (In Texas)

    • Paula: I can’t think of any reason they would be doing that. But since by Federal law they don’t owe you any paid time off it is not illegal. It is not good HR but there are a lot of companies that don’t do good HR.

  67. I’m wondering if what my current employer is doing regarding being late to work is legal. I am paid hourly and work for a small doctors office in PA and have been with the company for over five years now. The want to implement a new policy that states .. We offer a 10 minute window regarding clocking in .. Your allowed to clock in 5 minutes early and up to 5 minutes late .. If you clock in any later then 5 minutes your PTO will be deducted in 15 minute interverals for every 5 minutes your late ( after the initial 5 minute grace period. They expect you to continue working while your 15 minutes of PTO time is essential being docked/ taken/ used ( not sure what the correct legal term is) . So if I get caught in traffic and “punch in ” at 7:36 they will take 15 minutes of my PTO but I am required to continue working during this time. Is this legal?

  68. And I should have added that what is meant by ” grace period” is …they are now willing to pay you for coming in five minutes early, but you still lose the five minutes for being late .

    • Beth, legally an employer is only required to pay you for the time you actually work. But practice and court cases have said the incidental time around the process of clocking in is generally ignored until it gets to 15 minutes. That is not a hard and fast rule however. They seem to be, in my opinion, conducting a ridiculous practice trying to curb attendance problems. Since legally they only have to pay you for the time actually worked (under the federal law) taking away PTO is a practice and not the law. I would suggest you try to allow for traffic and not get caught in that situation. If you feel overly abused call the local Department of Labor and file a complaint.

  69. I am salaried employee and my manager never gives me off on Holidays nor give me an extra day off. It happened few times. My paycheck would show 32 hours working day and 8 hours holiday pay, even though i was working on holiday. It is clearly written on company’s hand book that I will not get extra pay but they will compensate with an another day off just in case I work on a Holiday. what are my options?

    • Since the FLSA does not require holiday pay there is no prohibition to making you work those days for any more pay. If you are a salaried exempt employee they can give you extra time off to compensate you. If you are nonexempt that is not allowed. Your options? Find a better place to work.

  70. This thread is getting long so apologies if I am repeating. I’d just like clarification in a few areas. As a salaried professional:
    1. “paid holidays” come out of our paid leave bank correct? What happens if we have to work those days anyway? I run a group home and there was no coverage for Memorial Day, so I personally worked it. What happens with that?
    2. If I worked 36 hours M-Th but had already been approved for F off, what happens when I am still “docked” a full 8 hours from PTO for that Fri when I only had 4 hours left in my “work week”

    • Amber: If your PTO policy was set up to include holidays then yes they come from that bank. Working Memorial Day was taking one for the team. That is the trade off for being a salaried nonexempt employee, you work when the work has to be done. Your pay cannot be reduced, but it also does not need to be increased. As to part 2 of your question I think you need a clearer definition of what your work week is.

  71. Company policy is no vacation pay until you’ve been there a year, how would that affect a salaried employee taking a vacation day prior to the 1 yr anniversary date he would become eligible? Can I dock his pay those days until he is eligible for vacation?

    Thank you

    • Jennifer, the distinction for whether you pay or not is dependent on whether they are exempt or nonexempt. According to the FLSA “Deductions from pay are permissible when an exempt employee: is absent from work for one or more full days for personal reasons other than sickness or disability; for absences of one or more full days due to sickness or disability if the deduction is made in accordance with a bona fide plan, policy or practice of providing compensation for salary lost due to illness; to offset amounts employees receive as jury or witness fees, or for military pay; for penalties imposed in good faith for infractions of safety rules of major significance; or for unpaid disciplinary suspensions of one or more full days imposed in good faith for workplace conduct rule infractions. Also, an employer is not required to pay the full salary in the initial or terminal week of employment, or for weeks in which an exempt employee takes unpaid leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act.” But if that employee works any portion of that day, then you would not be able to deduct the day.

  72. Can an employer in TN. force a non-exempt employee to make up accrued PTO after it is used equal to the amount of hours taken? Can they also place a negative mark on the employees revue file for using it? In this case sick time, vacation, and paid time off are lumped together into one mass and accrued on a bi-weekly basis.

    • Bill, if you have accrued the time off and have used it then the balance should be even. However, an employer can say “because you were off at a critical time we need you to work in order to get this done”. As long as they pay you for the time there is nothing wrong with your employer requiring you to work more time. If you refuse to do so then they can discipline you. There should be no discipline for using time you have accrued.

  73. Does requesting day (pto) count as a day off. State of California. For example in a 7 day work week I get 2 day off but when requesting pto instead of getting 3 days I only get 2.

  74. For Salaried employee if some one taken a vacation of 8 hours in 40 hrs work week. what should be check stub shows ? 40 regular hours or 32 regular and 8 vacation on the check stub ?

    • If the company has a valid PTO policy then the 8 hours can be deducted from the balance. For a salaried exempt employee the weekly check should be the salary amount regardless if that is composed of salary or salary plus PTO.

  75. I started working at a company on April 28th 2015, and got a call yesterday saying my position was terminated. I went in today and got told that they consider me still in my 3 month trial because I requested a total of 3 weeks off in a 2 month span. Which the employer knew I needed them off before she hired me do to traveling for a wedding. Do they have to count the 3 weeks of vacation as employment with the company? I got told i’m not getting severance because they aren’t counting it and I just want to know if there is anything I can do about this.

    • Chantaya:
      I hate to tell you this but there is no federal requirement for an employer to provide you any vacation or any severance. Sounds like you got a raw deal but there is nothing illegal about it on the surface. Move on and go to work for a good company.

  76. Hi. I have a question. I took 7 days off to have surgery and then was planning on working from home for a week and then coming to the office part time for a week after that and working from home the remainder of the day. I am exempt. I cleared all of this with my manger prior to going out. The day I came back on line from home I was notified by my HR dept that I had to give them a release note from my DR to come back to work. My time off was just vacation time. We do not have any difference between sick and vacation internally. We do have a new policy that is unlimited vacation with manager approval and if you are out more than 10 days you are required to take some other action – FMLA, disability, LOA. They just told me this and my Dr is out of the office. The 10 day time frame will pass, most likely, before he gets back to write me a release. Can my company require this from me when I was not on FMLA, disability or LOA? if so, why can they require this? It is my HR dept asking, not my manager. My HR dept found out through the grape vine that I was out b/c of surgery. I then told my manager he could tell them I was back as it was the day I came back on line. Please let me know. This is kind of disturbing to me as this was not workers comp or anything like that. I have been with the company for 4 years. Thanks!!

  77. The problem with my employer is that there is a difference in how exempt personnel are treated. Some exempt employees have taken off 60+ days annually, and no, that is not an exaggeration. We have one manager that probably only works on average 22-25 hours a week but is still considered full time. On the other hand, I took two PTO days in succession to a holiday and was told that my time off was excessive. I don’t understand how there can be two different sets of rules.

  78. Great Comment Section with Q & A’s. I was searching for an answer to the following: Recently our COO created an addendum to our PTO policy: ” Paid Time Off (PTO) Balance Policy Addendum-
    The balance for used, unaccrued PTO hours may not exceed 35 hours at the end of any month. Hours of used, but unaccrued PTO hours that exceed 35 hours at the end of a month will be deducted from that end of month paycheck.”

    If I have an exempt employee who is supposed to be getting the same amount per check – can I deduct this $ from his check legally? He is an exempt employee, our PTO is accrued hourly (8.75 hours month), and it doesn’t include holidays that is separate.

    Thanks so much

  79. I am a flat rate auto tech in Ohio . My work is now saying we have to keep 8hrs of pto time in reserve now in case we quit or get fired to cover the cost of a uniform or outstanding bill if we have any ?? Can they pull this stunt ?? the way I look at this is Iv worked for this company for over 11 years and it’s my pto time and if I take a 40hr vacation I should not have to have 48hr of pto time to get a 40ck for taking that week off ?

    • Tim:
      There is no requirement on a Federal level that you have to be paid any PTO at all, I am not sure about Ohio law. Regardless, it seems to be a poor practice and may result from some loss or perceived loss. It may not be illegal but it is bad management in my opinion. If you have questions about the legality in Ohio contact your state labor office.

  80. Thanks for your time Michael ,My work still 2 weeks later can give no good reason other then to so called cover there butts from the loyal hard working people that have worked for them for many years now!! As for poor management ! Yes it is to say the least ….. Thanks again for your time sir .

  81. Is it legal for work to dock your pay 50 cents per hour for 15 days if you request a day off within their approved 10 days before the date off? I am trying to plan a study group for finals and was told that although it is two months away, that I would be forfeiting that much of my pay even if I found a replacement for me that day.

    • Tiffany, that may depend on what state you live in. Under Federal law they cannot dock you pay if it takes you below minimum wage. I will say that sounds like a very poor practice.

  82. I work for a company and under the attendance policy i had approved days off and they now decided to change the policy and they said the days I had off excused the past year now count against me can they do that ?

    • Stephanie, there is nothing that prohibits that, at least not without knowing more detail. I have no idea why they would be doing that unless they are building a case to terminate you.

  83. I am salary exempt and live in Texas. I travel weekly for work. Travel 100%. Recently I have a 6pm appt in my town every 1 and 3 week. My employer wants me to dismiss this commitment. What are your thoughts about personal time. I would schedule my travel around this appt. being home by Thursday at 6pm. versus Friday. Are employers allowed to dominate personal time? (After 5 and weekends) for exempt employees? please advise.

  84. Angela:
    Sadly the answer is yes. That is the commitment that goes along with making a salary as an exempt employee. It is up to you to decide whether it is worth it or not. I am sorry to hear of an employer who is so inflexible.

  85. I’ve had trouble finding the answer to this on NJ and Federal labor law sites. For salaried exempt employees, is it legal to deduct a full PTO day from their PTO balance if they take a full regularly-scheduled day (ex: they are scheduled Mon-Fri and take off Tue) off but still put in enough hours to get to 40+ without using a PTO day?

  86. I have what may seem like an odd question. Is it legal to give exempt employees paid “personal” days (i.e. 5 day a year to use however they like) and not extend this same privilege to non-exempt employees. We are a small company and as it stands everyone receives 40 hours PTO per year.

  87. I was wondering if an employer can deny vacation time. Ex: The company provides 2 weeks of PTO per year, but I have to take my son to his psychiatrist, therapy, IEP meetings etc. My employer is aware of my current circumstances, and I automatically know that I will exceed those 2 weeks by taking days off here and there or half days. I was informed that if I top/exceed those two weeks, I wouldn’t be able to take any consecutive vacation time off, even if I have available PTO hours. Can an employer do this, even when they know my situation and provide them with doctor notes? I reside in the state of California. Thank you in advanced.

  88. My husband is exempt. He has two time off requests in the next two weeks. One is a holiday concert for our daughter which will probably work out to a half day and the other is a meeting for our daughter about her learning disability at school probably taking two hours at most. His employer said he has to pick one and can not go to both. He has sick time and vacation time. Can they (A) require him to choose or deny him time off? (B) use his vacation or sick time to cover a half day or less? Thank You!

    • Christie:
      Federal law does not say anything about this. Time off is company policy. So the answer is “Yes” to both your questions. Your state law may have a different requirement. Check with your state Department of Labor. His employer is not very progressive and certainly doesn’t understand the value of talent.

  89. Hey,

    I am an exempt employee. required to work 55 hours per week. Sometimes I end up working 50, sometimes 65. etc.

    In our PTO plan, our employer is proposing that if an exempt employee leaves 2 hours early for whatever reason, then 2 hours will be deducted from their PTO bank. (actual paid salary does not change)

    I read somewhere that this is okay to do to exempt employees in half day increments.

    Is taking from our PTO bank in hourly increments allowed?

  90. Hi! I am a non-exempt employee, working 40-hour weeks. I was informed by a co-worker today that the company can require us to use PTO to make up hours, for example, I have a doctor’s appointment this Friday, and will be leaving 1.5 hours early. My co-workers and I always make up the hours during the week, leaving a little late or coming in early during the other 4 days. Is this co-worker right? Can a company force us to use PTO, as opposed to making up the hours missed on other days? We do have a schedule, 8-5, with a 1-hour lunch, but the hours are very loose; we are allowed to come in early and leave late.

  91. My husband generally works 60 hours a week ( paid hourly). Can his employer force him to use a vacation day to take a Friday off if he has already made his 40 hours a week and over time?

  92. I am salary and commission. I work six days a week and have not seen a written policy on whether I’m required to or not. I have not seen written policy on how many hours im supposed to work a week in general. I am supposedly only required to work four hours on Saturday but I don’t know how they can delegate any hourly schedule being salary. Secondly we use ADP to request time off but there is no Avenue other then verbally asking superior to request Saturday off. Furthermore there is no option to use benefit time for Saturday, nor can the company strip benefit time from me for not working Saturday. But when I asked my boss if I could ultimately be punished for refusing Saturday, he said I could be. Any thoughts?

  93. I have a question im on fmla with redusded hours of 40 hours a week my company is workin 48 hours should I have to use my fmla for the other 8 hours

  94. I would like to know if the following is ok: I get paid a salary of $2400 a month, paid semi monthly. So I get the same amount whether I work 12 days that pay period or just 10 days, but if I take a day off (we don’t get vacation time) my employer docks my pay. Can they do this?

    • Not if you are truly an exempt employee. However, I suspect at $2400 you are not. Thus deductions are legal, however, you should also be paid overtime for any hours worked over 40 hours per week.

  95. We have exempt and non-exempt employees on our site. We have a policy for exempt employees where they can take two extra paid weeks off for bonding leave for the birth or adoption of a child. But our non-exempt employees do not get this same bonus of time off that is paid. Is this legal? Or it is legal just not fair?

  96. I submitted my PTO request at least a month in advance knowing I didn’t have enough hours, nor was I expecting to get to paid for the hours. I received an approval email for all three days requested (I only had enough hours to cover one day). After receipt of approval my GM says according to “the law” I have to come to work.
    Please let me know if this is in fact true. It’s my daughter’s graduation and I have already invested money in this occasion.
    Thank you in advance for any information you can provide.

  97. 3 years ago, I was hired by a non profit org., as their only salaried employee, with 10 days vac + 10 days sick / personal. No mention of being an “exempt” employee. I was told by the board chair that the position “included” flex and comp time, as I would be working excessive hours due to big events, and the organization recognized that. I tracked every bit of my time. I avg’d. 55 – 62 hrs. per week. Never expected comp time for that! But, when we had events and I worked 7 – 14 days straight and / or worked weekend days, (in addition to my reg. weekdays), for part-timers that took days off, I counted that. There never was an employee handbook, never a job review, and no complaints about my performance. 2 years after my start, a new board president, and treas., were elected. The bookkeeper of the treasurer’s private company took over PR from the previous treasurer, and tracked Sick / Personal and Vacation days. No logging of excess hours and days. My position was eliminated 9 months after the new Board took their positions, due to “cutting back” on expenses.
    I presented my compilation, which totaled:
    5 vacation days unused; no sick / personal days owed; 47 comp days owed.
    I would like to be compensated for my comp days owed. Do I have any recourse?

  98. I work construction and worked had slowed down for a week we were told we have to take off a week without pay , I have 2 weeks vacation time which I would have used but was told the ower of the company said we cant use them is this allowable?

    • That would depend on which state you are in. Some states require that if the vacation is earned it must be paid out. Under federal law there is no coverage for vacation. All you employer owes you is for time actually worked.

  99. If my employee has used all her sick days and has 40 hours of vacation time she hasn’t used, can she use a vacation day after she has called off without any notice??

    • Why wouldn’t you want her to? It takes one more day she can be away from work off the books. You can require her to adhere to a policy of requesting ahead of time, but I think it is best to let her take the time and be done with it.

  100. My employer recently gave two paid days off to a group of all male exempt employees, but they did not do the same to other female exempt employees or to any hourly employees. Is this legal?

  101. I am a salaried employee for a non profit organization. My company in a meeting told the employees starting July 1, 2016 that when PTO is used, we as the employees will be required to make up our time off without pay. I was wondering if that is legal since under the companies new rule our PTO benefit is useless.

  102. Our CA employer has recently advised us that certain personnel will be exempt. I understand that we are hired to work the 40 hours and this exempt status will prevent us from making any overtime. My question is, I am out of sick time and if need to go to doctor appointments or get sick, are they still allowed to dock my pay for being sick? We are also told we still need to clock in/out and wont change

  103. Diana:
    If you are truly exempt and no longer have any PTO available then they cannot deduct for illness. Here are the allowable deductions:
    1. Absence from work for one or more full days for personal reasons, other than sickness or disability
    2. Absence from work for one or more full days due to sickness or disability if deductions made under a bona fide plan, policy, or practice of providing wage replacement benefits for these types of absences
    3. To offset any amounts received as payment for jury fees, witness fees, or military pay
    4. Penalties imposed in good faith for violating safety rules of “major significance”
    5. Unpaid disciplinary suspension of one or more full days imposed in good faith for violations of written workplace conduct rules
    6. Proportionate part of an employee’s full salary may be paid for time actually worked in the first and last weeks of employment
    7. Unpaid leave taken pursuant to the Family and Medical Leave Act
    A deduction for a two day absence due to a minor illness when the employer does not provide wage replacement benefits for such absences would be an improper deduction.

  104. I am considered a perdiem employee at a hospital, I am scheduled 7-12 hour shifts per pay period. I receive no benifits. My employer does this to every new hire in our department. I have also been working there for 7 months. Is it legal to employ people with the intent to work them over full time hours and not offer benifits of any kind? This is a large trauma center with thousands of employees.

  105. Under federal law there is not requirement to provide any benefits. So the answer is yes, unless those benefits are being denied based on some protected category such as race, gender, religion or age.

  106. I’m an hourly employee with full benefits who works 8-5 Mon-Fri. I took 4 hours of planned PTO for doctor/dentist appointments in one week. I then worked 6 hours on Saturday which should have been classified as overtime, in my opinion. Instead, they took off the PTO time I requested from my paycheck and counted four of those six overtime hours towards regular time and only gave me 2 hours overtime. Is this appropriate/legal?

  107. My husband just took a week of vacation that he earned. It shows on his paycheck that he got paid for his 40 hours PTO, but then underneath that line shows this:
    PTO/Vac auto ADJ. non exempt. It took 23 hours of his pay out, which docked him nearly $400. He’s got a call in to his boss but until then, what does that mean, and can they do that for vacation time he earned? Apologies if this has already been asked. You have many questions on here.

  108. Cathi:
    I am afraid I cannot answer that question for you. That is specific to the payroll system being used. It sounds as if it is incorrect so it does need to be looked at by HR/Payroll.

  109. My understanding is that in California accrued time is considered earned and must be paid out. But I am not an attorney nor that familiar with California specifics. You need to check with an attorney schooled in California wage law.

  110. I was injured and couldn’t work for 4 weeks. Do I have to start my salary from the beginning? Or does my salary continue? Do I loose the raise I got and start from scratch?

    • Sammy:
      This does not usually occur and there certainly is no requirement to do this. In fact it would be very bad HR practice to do this. At the same time there is nothing legal that prevents your company from doing this.

  111. I have a question! My husband called off of work one day do to an asthma attack and went to his doctor. Who then excused him for the day he called off but the fallowing day as well do to change of his medication and not knowing if it would help or make it worst. He had asked his boss if he could use his vacation days for the two excused day and he refused to give them to him. Can his boss legal refuse to give him his vacation days for two excused absences?

    • Ashleigh:
      That will all depend on what state you are in. On a Federal basis since an employer is under no obligation to give vacation in the first place they can do what they want. In states where there are laws that protect vacation then they get treated differently. The boss is a fool. Giving your husband these two days would take them off the books and would reduce the amount of time your husband could be gone in the future. Stupid decision on the part of the boss not to take advantage of the opportunity to reduce the vacation accrual.

  112. I work in Memphis, TN., in the corporate office of a healthcare facility however it is separate from the hospital. I am a non-exempt employee. One day I asked to leave work and 1 hr early than my normal scheduled time of (5pm) due to some protest marches that were scheduled to take place that evening (5pm) within our area. I spoke with my SVP of HR whom I support and posed the question to use my PTO as well expressed concern for my safety if I left at 5pm. I work on the Executive floor, all the other EAs and Executives left early that day; some due to its Friday and they generally leave early on Fridays but majority due to avoid the traffic and protesting; my executive (SVP of HR) denied me to leave and stated my reason was not warranted for me to leave early. Mind you she and I were the only people left on the floor that evening and yes, I did not get home until 730 that evening which is what I tried to avoid. For some reason I find this to be wrong to deny my PTO request especially when I expressed concern for my safety. Your thoughts.

    • While this certainly did not make your day any better, the VP did nothing illegal, and probably nothing that violates the policy on PTO.

  113. My employer pays vacation time by the average hours worked. Ex: I requested 40 hrs of vacation time and got rounded down to 36 hours because that’s what I work in an average work week. Is that legal?

    • It is not only legal but also a very common practice. If you don’t work 40 hours per week why would you expect to get 40 hours of vacation time? Unless you are in a state or local jurisdiction that requires different then this is just fine.

  114. I have been working for my company for 6 months and have tried to request one personal unpaid day off for a friends wedding and they refuse to let me put in my request. My supervisors keep telling me that I am not allowed to request any days off even if they are unpaid until I have worked here for 1 year. In order for me to get this day off I have to wait for the schedule to come out and then ask my co workers if they can switch me days off. I have missed several family events because of this issue and am wondering if its legal?

  115. Hello Mike,

    I have some questions related to a few items I have read and some current changes going on within our department. All staff within our department are exempt, including managers.
    1. Our employer does not allow staff to work holidays that fall during the work week and designates a Friday or Monday to be an “observed” holiday where staff must use their PTO time. From various readings, I am uncertain if this is permissible according laws/regulations. Would the staff then be non-exempt?
    2. Only select staff within our department was forced to reduce their hours, thus salary reduction incurred. It appears that this is not “approved” from things I have read as well. From my readings, it sounds like this is not allowed without staff volunteering, is that accurate? Also, what are the expectations of all within the department having the same expectations in reduction of pay?
    3. When staff were informed of the reduction in hours, the supervisor commented about a bonus contract that had previously been entered would make up for the lost wages. However the bonus has stipulations and repayment requirements if certain requirements are not met and states that the staff are 80 hr per payperiod employees. Is it correct that a bonus is additional compensation and would not be considered part of the regular salary?
    4. Staff are given a start time and “expected” to be present and working by that time without any mention of this being a requirement/expectation in other policies or processes. What are the requirements related to shift times for exempt staff?
    5. Many employees within the department appear to be focused on hours vs. production; leaving after being at work for 8 hours without having all production requirements met. What are ways to approach/address this, especially when leadership will focus primarily on hours versus their own production.
    6. Our department leadership has stated several times that as exempt employees we are “owned” by the organization and that if have to work until 10PM to complete work, we will. She has also stated that her expectation is that staff “never check out” and are checking email/voicemail, and other work tasks during the evening/weekends when staff would be off. What rights do staff have regarding this, especially if hours and wages were just reduced without the production expectations being reduced?

    Thank you!

  116. Hi there, I’m a manager at a LLC, a tea and coffee shop. Recently, my boss had notified me about the days that I requested off for December of this year. The handbook that I signed back in Jan, states that to request days off it needs to be 2 weeks in advance. And days requested a month in advance is for sure given to the employee. Recently , my boss had notified me and my co-manager that we cannot have our days in December off because she has plans of her own and needs us to open and close the shop. I had brought it to her attention that it does not seem fair because there are only 5 other people on staff. 2 out of those , including myself, are managers and we only have access to open and close. She says that there is no other option and I can’t have my days off in December . Please help me understand if this is even legal.

  117. I had a medical condition & had surgery done that required me to be off for a total of 5 weeks.
    The surgery was not successful & had to have a total hysterectomy. My dr is now saying I need to be off for another 8-10 weeks.
    I am allowed only 12 weeks for non fmla. This will put me 2-3 weeks that I need off past the allowed 12. Can my employer let me go because of this? What can I do? This is beyond my control & I’m at a loss.
    I’ve never had anything happen like this before & im now not sure what will happen. Any help or suggestions is appreciated!

  118. Labor Day is not an observed holiday within my company. My co-worker was granted the day off but I was not. I ask every year if I can take this day off and I’m told no. What are my rights when my coworker gets the day off and I don’t

  119. If the office closes due to inclement weather do they have to pay their non-exempt employees when they are paying their exempt employees ? They stated we could not come in due to the weather and if something happened to us there was a liability issue. We were not given the option to come in.
    Also is a company allowed to lhave exempt employees earn more time off (PTO) per week than a non-exempt employee? It does not matter how long they have been employed. This is in the state of Georgia.

  120. If I take a day off before or after a designated paid holiday, can my employer charge me a vacation day for that day before or after the holiday?

  121. Sorry. Meant to mention that my employer takes TWO days for the day before or the day after a holiday. Can’t believe this is legal.

  122. I’m in sales. I currently have 2 days off. I was just told by management that if we didn’t get our sales numbers up by the end of the week, We will have our “days off ” stripped” until those come up. I work 100% commission. (car sales) I currently work about 60hrs a week now! I live in Texas. Is this even legal for them to do?

  123. I am an exempt employee in a managerial position who works over 40 hours a week. In January, I was on FMLA leave. When I returned, my boss told me I needed to start taking PTO for less than half day absences (something she had told me I didn’t have to do previously) because I was “creating a pattern.” When I contacted HR regarding this (because I believed it to be retaliatory, I was told that she could require that I do so. So, now, 8 months later, after my boss attended a compensation training, she has told me that I am not required to take any hours of PTO unless it is at least 4 or more. I also took the compensation training and was told the same. When I contacted HR again to see if I would be able to get the hours back that I had to use previously, I was told that using PTO for less than a partial day differed by department, not exempt status even though in the training it was stated that ALL EXEMPT EMPLOYEES are to take PTO in 4 hour increments; no less. HR has also insisted on contacting my manager to let her know what I have communicated to them. They also refused to talk to me over the phone. I asked them multiple times and they would not comment on the request to speak over the phone, but would only email.

    My questions are:
    1. Can exempt employees be treated differently according to which department they work in for the same company?
    2. If I was required to take PTO in less than the 4 hour increments, can I get it back?
    3. Can HR insist on discussing the issue with my manager if I went to them BECAUSE the issue is with my manager being retaliatory against me?

  124. I’m from Texas and my question is….If I am only scheduled to work 34 hours in a single work week, am I able to use my PTO to make up a full 40 hours or is that also up to my company whether they’ll allow it?

  125. So a company I have been with for 9 years has given us sick days. Now they are requiring that you can only use 6 sick days for the entire time you are with the company . Ever . I was planning on retiring from here. Is his legal at all?

  126. hello, I have to take 3 weeks off because my mother has a surgery. But I have been with the company only for 7 months. and I don’t have enough PTO. please advise!

  127. In general, I understand the spirit of your suggestion to “just let them take the time off”, as these employees are often working long hours and producing. However, I manage a health care practice and the exempt staff are often the health care providers, which are only productive with direct patient care. Would the advice change for kind of unique situation? If Dr. Jones, takes 2 hours in the middle of the clinic to attend to personal matters, the clinic isn’t billing for those visits that Dr. Jones would be seeing. It seems it would be fair to enforce CTO usage for this example. thanks

  128. I would like to know if it is legal for my boss to make me cover every hour I am away from my desk, when I want to take a personal/vacation day. I am approved for the day off with coverage of every hour away.
    I am the only person in my office that has to do this.
    Is this legal????

  129. I have what I believe is an interesting dilemma/possibly borderline illegal. Employer requiring exempt employees to take PTO when a) there is not enough work (based upon a standard set by employer) to fill an employee’s full day or b) the employee is not able to complete the set requirement for a “full days work.”

    So, employer requires that 5 “tasks” be completed each day. If there are either, not 5 tasks available to be completed on that day, or employee only completes 4 of fewer tasks, then PTO must be taken. This is in the medical field.

  130. I’m an salaried exempt employee in CA. My employer decided to have me clock in/out via email daily when I get to the office. They did this because I often get stuck in commute traffic and delayed 5-10 min. HR then docs me the time less than 40 hours per week, per check from either PTO or Vacation. In addition, I’m required to work overtime if requested and have worked 27 hours overtime in last 3 months with no compensation or earned PTO. I’d like to confront my employer, but want facts to have in hand before I do… It’s a highly micro-managed company, as an exempt employee am I required to clock-in and work overtime?

  131. My fiance employer is not letting him have his 1 day off this next week because the doctor wrote him off for 1 extra day last week due to very high blood pressure. He had an excuse from the doctor, is this allowed by law. Btw the other employee when he was suck a couple weeks ago with no doctors note still got his day off the next week

  132. Hi Mike, I have a question in regards to being maxed out on PTO. I am currently over the limit on my PTO and if I do not use it I will lose it at the end of December. However, every time I try to take PTO my employer calls me and I end up having to work part of the time. So, at the end of the year I am going to lose at least 40 hours of PTO. They will not let us cash the PTO out. I am an exempt employee. Is this legal?

  133. I have a problem.My work schedule is Monday thru Friday 730 to 430. My employer has me come in early some days so I get off earlier some days than 430. I was recently written up by them for violating the work schedule by doing this. I was not the one who asked to come in early and get off early. They requested this. Also on some days when work is slow they tell us they don’t have much work so we can leave early. They wrote me up for this also. Is this legal? We are in Texas

  134. Can a manager burn a employees vacation day randomly during weeks to make schedule hours work without consulting the employee. Meaning, the employee checks the schedule and sees they are scheduled a random day off, using their vacation time, that they never requested or wanted, all so the scheduling manager can make weekly hours work.
    Thank you

  135. I am a non-exempt salaried employee. My employer wants us to work a 6 day week that must be at least 40 hours. I submitted for two days off but worked 32 hours that work week and was then docked two days. Is this correct? Allowed?

  136. Hi,
    I’m a salaried non-exempt employee in Oregon. In a recent week I worked 36 hours M-Th and then took Friday off for a scheduled vacation day. Can my employer make me use 8 hours of vacation time for my scheduled day off when I only need 4 hours to make my scheduled 40 hours?

  137. In the State of Georgia, is a company allowed to have exempt employees earn more time off (PTO) per week than a non-exempt employee? It does not matter how long they have been employed. The non-exempt employee will receive the same amount per year no matter how long they are employed, but the exempt employee starts off earning more PTO open hire and continues to increase the amount annually.

  138. I am an exempt employee for 30 plus years and have a fairly new supervisor….prior to this supervisor if there is paid vacation time for any given week(ie: monday – tuesday time worked is 20 hours and vacation time is 8 a day fro wed-fri only 20 hours of vacation time would be required).hours worked could be deducted from hours worked..new supervisor states 24 hours of vacation time would still be used….is this legal? I am feeling robbed! In this case, vacation time of 4 hours is being used for time already worked…..

  139. My girlfriend took off for a week, using her PTO hours. She spoke with her boss and her boss approved her paid time off. She comes back to work after a week and finds out that her PTO hours weren’t included on her check. She spoke to her boss and her boss says that she can’t receive PTO unless she’s been at the job for a year or more (she’s been there for under a year). But, her boss approved them and didn’t inform her that she couldn’t get paid time off until she worked there for at least 12 months. So now my girlfriend missed out on $900+ because she was under the impression that she had PTO hours, and since her boss approved them she figured she had them only for her boss to turn around and say that they weren’t available after coming back to work from using them.

    Is there anything she can do?

  140. Hello, I want to use PTO hours to give me 40 hours per week but I have been told that I am not allowed to use PTO hours to increase my paycheck. I am asking for only 4 hours per week. They consider my full time hours to be 36 hours/week. Is this legal? I thought I could use PTO hours for what ever I wanted. -Thank You

  141. IF A EMPLOYEE COMES DOWN ILL AND TELLS THE BOSS SHE IS LEAVING AT 12 AND WILL MAKE UP THE TIME FOR THE NEXT 4 DAYS WORKING 1 HR OVER TIME .BUT DOESN’T GET PAID FOR THE TIME OFF OR THE OVER TIME ? WHAT IS THE SOLUTION?

  142. I am recently separated from the military and have to go the VA for regular appointments. The VA will not schedule appointments on weekends, so I have to miss time at my new job in order to make the appointments. Should I be getting charged PTO for these appointments?

  143. Our company is a roofing company located in Pennsylvania. I am the HR/PR accountant in the corporation. Lately we have had quite a bit of absenteeism and the owners want to automatically apply vacation time to these unexcused absentee days. The owners thoughts are that if they use their vacation days up with these absentee days, they company will not lose them for a week later on when the weather is nice and it causes delays in our peak working seasons. The owners also feel this will curb some of the absenteeism as well if the workers know they are losing vacation time. They asked me if this is legal with the Fair Labor Standards Act and that is what I am asking. Please let me know so I can be confident in my answer to the owners.

  144. JUST WANNA ASK, IF YOU MISSED WORK FOR 1 DAY, DOES YOUR COMPANY ALLOW TO DEDUCT YOUR VACATION DAY BECAUSE YOU MISSED ONE DAY OF WORK WITH OUT YOUR APPROVAL?

  145. Can my employer write me up if I go into the negative regarding my PTO… I understand that I won’t get paid, but can they legally write me up, in addition to not paying me?

  146. I’m in California and we are approved to work overtime up to 10 hours every day 5 days a week (I take full advantage of the the OT and general work 50 hr per week). I requested 1 vacation day and it was approved by manager and then later denied because HR said I had already worked more than 40 hours in that 1 week period. I only actually worked 32 “regular” hours and the remaining 8 hours were OT hours accrued 2 hrs extra per day for 4 days. Is this legal? Employing this logic means that any employee working daily overtime would never be able to take advantage of their earned PTO. Thanks

  147. I worked for a small law firm for almost 5 years in CA. I was exempt/salaried and this worked out very much to my firm’s advantage. I often had to work late, including weekends, and sometimes travel. We did not have a set PTO policy. Taking vacation never came easy and was often times not approved due to a heavy case load. I recently resigned and my last paycheck was mailed to me a week later. There was no payment for any unused PTO. If I were to go back over the years and actually calculate my days off, I’m certain there would be a substantial amount owed. Conservatively, assuming the “bank” started over in January, I left in February, wouldn’t I be entitled to at least one paid day off that was not taken? Since we did not have an official PTO policy, do I have any recourse? Thank you.

  148. I’m an hourly employee with sick time and vacation time to use. I’ve requested a day off but due to short staffing my supervisor has denied it. Is that legal? Is there something I can do about it?

  149. I work 40hrs a week. Monday-Fridays. Weekends off. If a holiday lands on the weekend which I’m already off company policy is we get an extra day off. I asked for an extra day off and my manager denied my request. Is that right?

  150. If my company asks me to leave my timesheet where everyone has access to it and i prefer not too is there a law or anything about my privacy?

  151. An exempt employee is working towards her master’s degree in her field. While she has interned (unpaid) and volunteered with the company for 2 years, she was not hired until 9 months ago, and therefore has 3 months left before she begins accruing PTO. In order to complete her master’s level internship, she asked for and was approved to take 40 hours off. She took 3 days off last week and 2 days off this week (all in one pay period). Last week, though she took off 3 days, she still worked 37 hours. This week she took off 2 days but will still have put in at least 23 hours. Since she worked during both of these weeks, and she does not yet have PTO, from what I’ve read here she still should be paid her regular salary, is that correct?

  152. I have a court hearing I must attend I provide my job with the appointment paper to request off and was told that would be considered a unexcused absence and I would get a 1 day suspension for it. I would like to know if this is legal

  153. I am an exempt employee. My company lets us accrue paid sick time. There are occasions when I am either out sick or have a family member sick e.g. my daughter and must take a sick day. Frequently, I will need to work from home at some point off and on during those sick days. However, my employer still wants to charge me full sick days. I feel this is unfair to me, but having to do the work is often a necessity since I work in a one-person office with no backup. Any comments??

  154. I apologize if this question has already been answered, I may have missed it. Our small business has 10 employees, including part time workers and the two owners. Besides the owners and myself, all employees are hourly. Employees accrue a certain amount of PTO that can be used for any reason. We also have a specified amount of unpaid time off that they are allowed to use before any disciplinary action is taken. Again, the unpaid time off can be used for any purpose. In either case any time off must use either the PTO or the unpaid time off. Unless a special exception is granted, which happens periodically for various reasons.

    The question I have is whether or not it is legal to require non-exempt employees to make up missed hours by either coming in early, staying late, or working the Saturday shift. During slow periods missing time isn’t a huge issue, however in our busy seasons it becomes a massive problem to unexpectedly lose that 8 hours of production time. We are in MN if that makes any difference. Thank you!

  155. Is it legal for your employer to make a rule saying in order to get time off that we have to request it more than two months in advance?

  156. I work for a school district . In the summer time they offer you to work for the summer but they want to pay you less money and they hold you money for two week when you have been working for them . The teachers come back for summer school and the janitors they all get there pay and the dont hold back there money why is that.also its not in the union contract.

  157. question as a exempt employee is it ever ok for a supervisor of a non-for profit at any time to single out a employee with a threat of a write up after asking the team to take on extra work and everyone on the team responds that there work load is overwhelming at this time due to personnel lost yet the supervisor only responds in e-mail to me that if I did not take on these extra duties that he was going to write me up but were all in the same boat and I even have a greater work load than any of the rest of them and i am the oldest on the team is this a example of unfair labor practices

  158. I work at a medical office full time. The doctors at our office are not working July 3 (Monday), although some of our other offices will be open because the doctors are working July 3. My question is, can they make us use PTO for July 3 in order to be paid for July 4 (Tues.)? We do have the policy of having to work the day before and after a holiday in order to be paid the holiday pay. I would think that if we didn’t want to be paid for July 3, we would still be paid our July 4 holiday pay. It feels like just because our doctors aren’t working at our office we are being penalized by using our PTO to have the day off. We also have what is called LOS ( low sensus: which means there aren’t enough doctors on any given day to have the normal number of employees) in which we are given the choice to use PTO or not, which I feel should be applied in this case. Our boss, states that HR decided this and this is how it is. They also gave us a choice to be On Call for the other offices ( but still have to use PTO if not called in), or just decide to work at another office.

  159. On Tuesday, the owner of my company held a 30 minute meeting to inform us of changes in company policy. We are all exempt employees and work in Texas, a fire at will state.

    Our office hours, effective immediately, are changing from 8 to 6 Monday through Thursday, 8 to noon Friday to 8 to 5 Monday through Friday without any notice. Whatever, I am fine with that. I am not sure how changing hours will increase productivity when the billable work is not there but it is what it is.

    Here is the kicker. We were told that if we take vacation and/or PTO that we have earned and that causes us to go below our billable goal, we are required to make up that time without pay to reach our billable goal again. Is it legal to require an employee to work hours they took off for vacation without pay?

    Example:
    My expected billable percentage is 85%
    I am at 83% billable
    I take off 24 hours of vacation time I have earned out of the 137 hours I have available
    This drops my billable percentage to 76%
    My employer now wants me to work an extra 27 hours of billable time in addition to my 40 hour work week without pay to get my billable percentage to 85%
    I am not credited with any additional vacation by making up the hours I rightfully earned working at my company for 11 years

    What are your thoughts on this?

  160. i work as a manager at a retail store. i am only allowed so many hours for the work week, for the people under me. i was told if i go over those hours that they will take my vacation time to cover those hours i went over with my employee’s. can they do that to me????

  161. My employer just told me that “personal reasons” is not a reason to take time off. He will allow it this time but in the future he wants a detailed reason. Do I have to inform my employer of the reasons I need time off? I’m an hourly employee/Admin. Assistant who works 35-39 hours per week. I am not salary.

  162. I have worked for a preschool that is board run by the pastor and church members. A new pastor started 2 years ago.i have been at the preschool for 26 years. The pastor has informed me he will not have a job for me in Seprember. My belief is it is do to retaliation for questioning him and disagreeing with him. He looks down on women and has no use for people who question him. I had not used used 5 weeks PTO. We have no employee handbook. We get a salary summary sheet in september. This sheet only says if employee leaves yky lose time. I did not leave and they are refusing to pay my time to me. Is this legal?

  163. I am an exempt employee that receives 120 hours of PTO annually. As a manager of field service employees, I work all sorts of odd hours in addition to my “regular” work day hours, as I am considered on call at all times. I have two questions. 1) on my regular non-working hours, can I be disciplined for not being immediately available due to partaking in an extracurricular activity that takes me out of a cell phone reception or internet service area. 2) If I take PTO for some vacation time, can my employer require me to work during that time. For example, I have 1 week off and will be out of cell phone range with no internet access, but it happens to be payroll week. Can my employer require me to log in and complete my employee’s time cards?

  164. I have a question on behalf of my mom. She works at a factory in WI and is supposed to get 4 weeks of vacation per year based on a 40 hour work week. She recently submitted for a week of vacation to come and visit me in TX and they made her submit for 50 hours off because they are currently working 10 hour days. Are they allowed to make her use that extra 10 hours of vacation time even though it’s overtime? They usually work 8 hour days 5 days a week though it sometimes changes to 6 days a week if they are in a busy time of year.

  165. I’m an exempt employee, and I took one day off of my comp time weeks before the actual date. However, I called in sick 2 days before the weekend because I had a bed tummy. Then come Monday, the day I filed for a vacation day, my supervisor texts me to ask if I’m still sick. I told her her that I was off and filed for comp time.
    Then I find out from my Assistant Manager that my Supervisor told him that I should still inform her that I was out that day.

    My question is, which may sound dumb, but am I obligated to text or call my supervisor that I’m out that day? I’ve never had a supervisor say that stupid statement. It doesn’t make sense, but is she right?

  166. My employer changed my job to “exempt” but I am still required to respond to emergencies (after hours): drive time, tools, maintenance, repair… Shouldn’t a technician that is “on-call” to physically respond to a remote site for maintenance and repair be classified as “non-exempt”?

  167. can an employeer write you up for not coming in on your day off and say that its mandatory you have to come in or get written up

  168. When I first started working for a company I signed up for full-time. Now after 3 months. They have been cutting my hours . I only have 3 days a week. I told them but they still don’t do anything. Can I do something about this ?

  169. Hello-

    I’m an exempt salaried employee who rarely takes partial days. However the other management members under the same salary plan takes half days on bi weekly basis. I contacted my manager because I was having tummy issues overnight and wanted to rest up before work. I requested 3 hours delay and was told that I had to take a full day off and will have to use 8 hours of PTO to cover it. Is it fair for an employer to force a salaried employee to take 8 hours off instead of 3 and dock the employee?

  170. I am a small business owner in NYC. I have 10 full time employees. With the new laws will I be required to give paid time off to my employees even though I would have to pay to cover the shifts of any employee who is off? All of my employees are paid hourly.

  171. I am paid salary. If I have used all of my vacation hours and an emergency comes up and I have to request more time off, can I be written up for that? I understand not being paid for that time off, but can they write me up for taking that time off?

  172. My employer requires all exempt employees to take a full day off for personal matters when requesting for any time off during work hours, so that they can deduct a whole day of pay. Is this legal? Even if the employee only needs 1hr off, can an employer force you to take the whole day off for a deduction in pay?

  173. Can exempt employee that is on an approved vacation be mandated to come back to work during the approved vacation?

  174. I am an exempt employee and was working 70 hours per week for my company. I have worked for the company for over 2 years. A few months ago, I started having panic attacks, insomnia and stress from working so much. I went to my doctor and they stated I needed time off to recoup. I did and my employer stated I had to use my vacation so I did. I went back to work on 40 hr week requirements from the doctor. Last week I caught pneumonia and have missed 4 days. My employer is saying they are docking my pay for this since I have no vacation days or PTO left. I had used them during my medical leave. Can they do this? It doesn’t seem fair since I put so much time in with them and went above and beyond my 40 hours. I even work from home when I was ill and they still docked me. Is this legal?

  175. My place of employment has started requiring us to make up our unpaid time off.
    If we request unpaid leave, our employer makes us see patients who would have been scheduled to see us during our time off. This is to be done on our own time with no extra pay. This can’t be legal, is it?

  176. I am in an Exempt manager in New jersey. My boss is stating that she can call me on my days off to ask me a question about work, if necessary. Is she allowed to do this? Or can I refuse to answer the call on my 2 days off?

  177. I am an exempt employee. My employer only wants me to work 35 hrs a week. I’ve worked here for a year from 9 to 4. Now they want me to take a lunch, so 9 to 430…1/2 half hour lunch. I’m an administrator and bookkeeper….this job takes more then 35 hours a week. What are my options…do I have to take a lunch?

    Also, they didn’t know that my position was exempt when I started. I had a vacation already booked and told them about it when I started. So when they started me they had me at non exempt then changed me two weeks in. Our vacatioo we don’t get for a year. So at exempt they took out of my check the 4 days I had off…is that right to do? I’m salaried

  178. I live in Tn. I have 88 hours of PTO time left. I can only roll over 40 hours. I requested time back in April for time off in December. That time never got approved. Now my Manager has told us today no one can take off in December. But now there are no available days in Nov I can take. Am I just going to loose my 48 hours?

  179. In the state of Florida if I’m on salary and get paid every two weeks and I work for 10 hours on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and 8 hours on Wednesday for a total of 48 hours in the first week and 10 hours on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday, and 8 hours on Wednesday followed by hours on Friday for a total of 44 hours on the second week for a total for a total of 92 hours in a scheduled 80 pay period. Can my employer pay me for 78 hours since I only worked hours on the Friday of the second week?

  180. Hi I’m wanting some advice really the company I work for is massive but the department I work for do 58 hours contracted but also pressure u to cover shifts on top of the 58 hours cause they don’t wanna use casual staff. Annual leave is only given if staff come forward to cover the shifts. So if no one comes forward you aren’t given annual leave. This is so wrong annual leave should be requested and if no one else is off at that time it should be given. It’s down to management to cover annual leave as this is an entiltlement given to employees from the government not the company I work for. Any advice on what I can do to change this as it’s not right at all. And management should not be getting away with this.

  181. Pregnant and have FMLA approved. I want to use my PTO and sick leave during my first two weeks of fmla. My company is refusing to pay me because they are short staffed. If I don’t use the pto and my sick time I will lose it. Is this legal?

  182. sir. if i take leave from friday to nex sunday means 10 days that time last sunday is consider to leave in 10 days..or not?

  183. I am a commission-based salesperson for a heating and air company I have a $0 hourly pay and just collect Commission on my sales if I take a day off and do not want to use vacation time can my employer make me use the vacation day

  184. Q: I work over 40 hours per week. I have no pto left but need to take a day off. I worked 36 hours that week but was docked 8 hours for my day off. Is this legal?

  185. I’m a teacher. I went to my principal and said I was having a very minor procedure done. I asked for 3 days off from work. When she came back and said that I would need to have documentation from my doctor for that short period of time, I decided to cancel my appointment and reschedule during a time when school was not in session.

    I have had some trust issues (very small school), and even though I understand HIPPA laws, nothing is every really private, and I’ve decided to reschedule.

    She came back to me with something to sign that highlights our entire conversation. She says that I need to sign it, so that I can’t come back and say they denied me the time off for a medical procedure. Do I really need to sign this? Even if I did say that (which I never would), I’m sure it would never hold up, so why make me sign this – again, I have issues with privacy.

  186. In the state of Virginia, can an employer legally deduct hours from accrued PTO to ensure the exempt employee has worked the full 40 hour week ?

  187. I am an exempt employee , been with my company 4 + years. I am the only female in my field. Up until recently I have been able to work from home when my children are sick or even myself. I work as a software engineer. Recently the rules around working from home have changed and we are no longer allowed to work from home and must use our PTO if we cannot work in the office. My concern is that even though my supervisor is requiring me to take PTO, they are still insisting that I complete my work load in that same week. For example, if I have to take PTO for 3 days (24 hours PTO) they are stating that I still need to find 24 hours somewhere else in that same work week to complete my tasks. I work hard and many odd hours since our company is international and I get my work done, but they are telling me I have to use my PTO and still work, is that legal?

  188. I had to take off 2 days sick but have run out of paid time off. I asked my boss to just please mark it as unpaid. She said this is not policy, that I have to use next year’s accrued vacation. How can I be forced to use accrued vacation that I have not accrued yet? Is this legal?

  189. I’d love some advice on this! My husband can only carry 40 PTO hours over to a new year. He took vacation days & hours over Christmas so that he would use needed days and not lose hours. He is a Physical therapist in Oklahoma.

    On Dec 23, his boss contacted him asking if he could come into work on Dec 24th to see some new patients who were being admitted to their facility. He didn’t want to, but told her if she got stuck & needed someone he would go work.

    He worked about 6hrs on Dec 24th.

    Turns out his company then cancelled approx 6 of his PTO hours, this not giving them to him trough pay and also not carrying them over. Basically, he worked for free on Dec 24th because they decided to make him lose the same amount of PTO hours.

    I don’t understand how this is OK, but also don’t know how we can fight this. The regional boss said this is policy and he ended up with too many hours.

    Should t the fault be on the boss/company who requested he come in???

    Help!!

  190. I had requested a day off without pay and it was approved. However i showed up and worked. What will happen? It shows i worked 16 hours, does that mean ill get paid 16 hours or only the 8 hours i worked?

    Thank you

  191. Can I be fired for useing a personal day during mandatory overtime?
    At my job in pa we are given 2 sick and 2 personal days a year . my boss recently discovered he can force mandatory overtime to witch I said I was going to use a personal day because I have payed for plans already. I was told if I don’t come in I am fired . Is that legal?

  192. What if your employer does not offer any benefits and you request days off, of course we don’t get paid but why would he make a smart remark about it if he is not paying me for those days.

  193. In CA If you are on salary can the employer work u 16 or more hours a day 7 days a week for months at time with out paying any over time and is the legal?

  194. I am a non salary employee but when I wanted to cash in my vacation time that I had accrued in the year i had to use 8 hours of my 40 for a sick day so at Christmas when I went to cash the remaining of the 40 accounting said that she could not pay me for it and i couldnt use it due to it not being a full 40 hours……again I had already earned this from the previous year…..Can they legally do this?

  195. I have worked in this restaurant for 29 yrs. No paid time off, no benefits whatsoever.. which is normal in restaurant business… in the course of a year, I request about 5 or 6 days off.. for the whole year.. those I can trade someone for, I do, but otherwise, one of the owners has to work.. we have 5 employees and 2 owners.. one of whom works at another job cuz he hates working at his own business… my question is, is that unreasonable to take that much time off for a year.. after 29 yrs of service?
    I used to take 10 day vacation in the summer, we had season tickets to a local pro football team, and there were kids’ events when mine were still at home, and that was always ok, but now,in the last 8-10 years, I get harassed and ridiculed and made to feel like I killed Santa Claus for asking for any time off… is there any law that protects employees who don’t have any benefits?? Do we have any rights at all? or are they like benefits.. non existent??

  196. If I am working as an Exempt employee and I call out sick on Monday, but then come to work both Saturday AND Sunday, can my employer dock me for a day of work? They are saying they can because it is a scheduled work day (M-F). On that same token, would they have to ignore it if I didn’t come in on Saturday (an unofficial workday)? It seems unethical (an maybe illegal?)to make someone work 6 days but pay them for 4.

  197. Our Florida company only hires non-exempt part-time employees. Within our hiring process, we will only hire employees that are available to work a 3 hour shift Saturday mornings in addition to some weekday hours. It isn’t unusual for an employee to demand Saturday mornings off after working for us about a year. Within the hiring process, we do not make them sign a policy stating they “must” work Saturday mornings, but the ones that are not available Saturdays we simply do not hire (therefore they are all under the verbal understanding it is a requirement). Can we legally let an employee go if he/she makes this demand?

    Thank you!

  198. I am a full-time employee. However, often my employer sends us home if work is slow. Am I guaranteed 40 hours pay anyway unless it was my choice?

  199. Hey – I’m a part-time RN in a hospice. Occasionally my job will ask me to not come into work when I am scheduled – because of low census. But they make me use PTO (instead of just having an unpaid day off).

    Is it legal to force me to use PTO for a day off, in which I didn’t ask for?

  200. I have a question. My question is. My husband’s job is forcing him to go from an hourly to a salary employee. He has over a hundred and fifty hours of PTO banked. Does his company have to pay him that PTO hours before they put him on his salary or does he just lose all of his PTO hours.

  201. Hello, my mom works as an hourly employees at a convenience store in GA. She just made her 1 year anniversary in January and as a result has accumulated paid time off. She requested a certain set of days off in advance according to company guidelines but when she saw the schedule, her manager had changed her requested days off without speaking with her. Is this allowed? I thought the employer could only approve or deny a vacation request and not change the dates requested. Is there any action she can take?

  202. For companies that do not offer PTO or sick time are they able to regulate how many days off you can request. For example I request 11 days off in one month will they be able to deny my time off?

  203. Can an employer use an employees leave when they are salaried NON exempt when the employee is short their hours during the work week when they are required to work their 40 hours in order to be paid a salaried wage?

  204. If your regularly scheduled work week is Mon-Fri 7a-4p, can an employer mandate overtime on Saturday and then require you to use accrued vacation or sick time to cover the Saturday mandated work hours?

  205. We live in Austin Texas. My wife works for a big hospital in town for over 30 years. She is an RN and is paid hourly. Nurses work 12 hour shifts. Her PTO is for vacation and sick time.

    The situation is that she will be schedule for a shift and 8 hours into the shift she will be cancelled and told to go home. They then dock her 4 hours of PTO. Can they do this?

  206. I am an hourly paid employee for a company who has an outlined attendance policy of which it states we have to give 90 mins. Prior to an absent or tardy. Now my manager is saying she requires her team to give 24 hour advance this is not including weekends. If we need to callout sick on a Monday we need to tell her the Friday prior.

    My question is can a managers policy outrule the company policy of 90 mins. Advance notice to her requirement of 24 hours?

  207. I accrue PTO very slowly at my non-exempt job and want to take a day off without pay on occasion to save PTO for a vacation but my manager says that even though I wouldn’t get paid, they will deduct those hours from my PTO. If I take time off without pay, how can my employer deduct those hours from my PTO bank? Isn’t that the equivalent of “double-dipping?”

  208. My question is, how many personal days, if any, can an exempt salary employee, for the state of Tennessee, legally take before we can dock their pay?

  209. I’m an exempt employee and I work Monday-Friday 8-10 hours per day. I requested to use PTO for a Friday and the following Monday off. My employer is telling me that I have to use PTO for Saturday and Sunday, so a total of 4 PTO days, even though there is nothing stating this requirement in our Policy and Procedures . Is this legal?

  210. Question I have 2 days off a week. My job said u earned 5 days of pto. They said that my 2 days off are included in the pto. I thought days off were separate from pto am I wrong or is my job

  211. I am a salary employee. My employer always forgets to deduct PTO durning the pay cycle that it was used. Months later, she decides to finally go back and deduct all the PTO time that she forgot to deduct. Can an employer deduct PTO time that was taken months ago?

  212. My boss has told all his employees that we are not allowed to ask for time off till a certin date is he allowed to do that

  213. Hello,

    I have question. I have just started a job with a new employer. While going through orientation, I found out that the employer offer’s vacation time. However, they do not offer any PTO. They do not even allow employees to use their vacation time at their own discretion. We can only use our vacation time in a 5 day CONSECUTIVE interval. For example, if we need to use one or two days of our vacation time to take care of personal errands or simply don’t need to use the full 5 days all at once we cannot.
    I have NEVER experienced this before in my entire working career. Is this legal? Has anyone else experienced this?

  214. Hello, I have a question. I am an exempt employee status. I have used all of my sick and vacation time. I lost my daughter and my work gave me 3 days bereavement but I needed more time, I took another week off then I got sick and had to take another 4 days off. I am being told I will not get paid for the extra days off. I work 4 days a week equally average of 38 hours. I thought because I was salary I would had gotten paid and I had a doctors note. I work for a small business and they do not offer short term or FMLA. Basically is it wrong they did not pay me?

  215. Hello I have a simple question. I’m a security guard in the city of industry here in California for a company called Industry Security Services inc. Here’s my story. I’ve been working for this company Completing 3 years this upcoming September. Imy days off are Sunday Mondays therefore any memorial holiday pays I don’t get paid for because it’s considered my “day off” is that normal? Another question is I only get 3 paid sick days through out the year anyother day I need off I can request it but won’t get paid for it so it’s pretty much a lost day. So being here 3 years I’ve never had a vacation paid nothing like that there’s no such thing is there anything I can do about this ?

  216. I am a full time manager who is Salary. Every week we get a Tuesday off and work Saturday. If a holiday which a benefit of the job is a paid holiday falls on a Monday then we are told we don’t get our Tuesdays off we must work all days that week. I fail to see how paid holidays are a benefit as I work the same amount of hours I always do in those weeks and my pay stub says I’m paid for the holiday but I never really am. Is This really ok?

    Also we are told work weeks are 37.5 hours however I always work 42 and cannot soften my time any week unless i take PTO. Am I missing something? I get Salary I do but shouldn’t you be compensated for what a normal week would be?

  217. My husband works for a company, he gets paid salary and does not get paid overtime. He works 60-70 hours per week sometimes. The company he works for now does not have any work him to do at this time, he is on standby and waiting for his next job to start. Can the company withhold payment from him due to the fact they do not have any work for him at this time? The company stated they were not going to pay for last week and asked if he wanted to use vacation time to make up the time. Is this legal due to the fact he is still on the payroll, considered salary and it is not his fault the company has nothing for him to do.

  218. I have a question regarding an exempt employee requesting a week off for vacation. We are a seasonal company in California, that does not offer vacation time. Are we required to pay the normal salary to this employee?

  219. If I am a employee in the public sector, and our employer allows us to take comp time. When I attempt to use my stored comp time, is it legal for them to deny my request?

  220. I’m in Illinois, non-exempt hourly. I had to leave work for 2 hours to take my son to the Dr. Now my employer is telling me that I have to use my PTO and it’s an option. If this is not in the handbook, are they allowed to do this?

  221. Can a company force a non exempt or hourly paid employee to take unpaid time off but then not let them use their pto or sick days for it?

    • My question is similar. If an office closes on a regular workday because the Doctor does not want to work that day, can the company REQUIRE us to use PTO, or should we be paid as a regular day. Also, do we have the right to work that day if we can verify we have work to do.

  222. We have a fellow employee who takes 5 days a month off because the overtime we get, he doesn’t use any of his PTO. What he does is not use any of his PTO and carries it over into the following year so he starts the year with 3 weeks in the bank. This practice is driving me and fellow associates crazy because he is always screwing up the weekly schedule because of this.

  223. Hello, I’m an HR Generalist with a mid-sized construction company in Maryland. One of our employees is on approved vacation, he was called to come back to work early. He was to initially return on Monday morning but is told that he must return Sunday evening at 6pm. How can we require an employee return on an approved day Off? This means he must leave his vacation early to report to work or risk losing his job. Is there a law or anything that can deem this unlawful or just wrong?

  224. I work only 40 hours/ week and work 9 hrs/day with no lunch, but .5 minutes are still being deducted so my total time a day is 8.5 hrs. I recently took a day off for the first day of school and my total hours for the week can out to 34.55 and my office manager took away the 2.55 to total my time to 32 hrs. Is this allowed?

  225. I have a related question: Does the reporting of vacation and sick leave per employee have to be private? If it’s posted in separate directories on a common drive and therefore technically accessible by everyone, does this break any laws or regulations? This is strictly the used / unused vacation and sick leave, nothing about dollar amounts is included.

  226. Question, I am currently short on hours at my job. I have 16.56 hours of PTO and already have requested time off for this Friday due to our company having yesterday off for labor day. mind you I work 4/10’s. I broke my glasses and am hoping to leave 2 hours early today but do not wish to use my PTO. Does my job have to make me use my PTO even if I just want to take the hours for today unpaid?

  227. I have a question, i work in Texas. My son recently came home from vacation with bed bugs. Since he was dropped off the day before i went back too work i was going to need to call in so i could clean. I only missed one day of work. Now they are only giving me 1 day a week, stating the shift lead (not the manager nor asst manager) drew up a new policy, that by the way i nor any other employee has signed it including the owner of the store. If I’m not mistaking aren’t new policies decided upon the upper management than signed by the employees so we understand? And my main question in all this is it legal to penalize an employee for having an emergency?

    Thank you for your time,
    Shannon Lloyd

  228. It is so beneficial to know your employee rights! I love this article because it clearly explains all the rights someone has; I know someone who was recently fired and feels it was unfair, so these tips will be very helpful to her. Perhaps she’ll look into an employment lawyer to help her receive the compensation she may deserve.

  229. Question: I work at a police dept in Virginia. Myself and 3 other command staff employees are exempt. Everyone in our department who works outside overtime (various events) is paid at a rate of time and a half. The command staff is allowed to work the same overtime and is also in charge of any officers working the overtime event and ultimately responsible for making sure things run smoothly. There are 2 of us who regularly work overtime; however, because we are exempt we are only paid at our department overtime rate and therefore are the lowest paid officers working overtime when we work it along with others. Is that legal? I am figuring since they are allowing us to work overtime and myself and the other officer which hold rank are generally in charge of anywhere between 6-20 officers depending on the event we should be paid at the time and a half rate as well. Thanks!

  230. This has been a dispute at our company as the former HR head had a different perspective on the issue.

    Our regular scheduled worked hours are 40 per week. Can an employee request PTO that when added to regular worked hours, be more than the 40 hours? E.g. – they worked 28 hours (in 3 days) then requested 16 hours of PTO for the next two days, for a total of 44 hours.

    Former HR said no, but our new HR person has indicated that it is acceptable for an employee to have more than 40 hours of straight/regular time in a work week.

    Which is the correct practice?

  231. If a salaried non-exempt employee has worked 39 hours between Mon-Thurs already and wanted to take whole day of Fri off, can they submit 1 hour of PTO and still take the whole day off?

  232. Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging on blogs
    I stumbleupon every day. It’s always useful
    to read through articles from other authors and use something from other websites.

  233. I am a salary exempt employee….I was out of PTO days. I didn’t come into the office for two days, but worked from home, still answering emails and calls etc both of the days. My employer said that I will not be paid for the two days that I was not at the office, even though I worked while I was away. Is this legal? Thank you.

  234. Hello our employer pay our pto out at the end of the year so we always start the year at a deficit. I happened to get sick the first week of January and required a procedure and an additional week off of work. Which caused me to go into a deficit. In our employee handbook it states that’s e can work any schedule of our choice as long as we work the minimum hours. Upon my return I tried to make up my missed week by working longer days and coming in on the weekends to which my boss told me I could not. I have recently been taking pay without leave since winter months have also made me missed days from work when my children get sick.
    Is this allowed? I am a salaried exempt employee.

  235. Hello,

    I am a non exempt salary employee, but because the production area of my company is being shut down on a Friday I am being told to take the day off and either use my vacation hours to get paid for that day or note it as a no pay day on my timesheet. Since this was not a day off on my accord should I have to make that decision or should I get paid for the day regardless since I am salary?

  236. I am a paid professional on salary yet I have to fill out a time card, hours deducted for time away, no paid sick time, no vacation, no time away for VA appointments. no disability, no insurance, no retirement. What can I do?

  237. we have an exempt employee who may need to go to rehab for an addiction.. He is in denial at this point and an intervention in the works. We are a small employer (<50 employees) not required to offer FMLA, and we do not offer short term disability. Can we place the exempt employee on an unpaid leave of absence while he is out for rehab and recovery,, and be in FLSA compliance? Time away could be three months. We are an Ohio non-profit employer.

  238. The HRMS market has grown significantly in the past years, and is projected to grow to $30 billion by 2025, thanks to trends, such as AI and ML. It allows companies to continually sift through wage, time, location, industry, to uncover insights that can be used for better, faster, smarter decisions every day. Be a part of this global change with: http://www.peoplehum.com/#bl

  239. Hi! I work as a full time hourly non-exempt emplOyee in Wisconsin. My manager just told us that we have to take a full 8 hours for each day off. If im aT over 40 hours why am i having to tale the full 8 hours Of pto and get paid 4 hoirs of overtime as reGular pay. I would rather take only 4 hours pto. Our vompany policy manual states “personal time may be used to fulFill the number of hours normally worked in a woRkweek (in your primary job) —not more hours than needed”. HR responded to my questioning this with a reply, “the information you’re refrencing is in regard to no having enough hours in a particular week”. They just changed My pto day off to 8 hOurs for this previous monday when they told all of this 2 days after.

  240. i WORK FOR A PRIVATE COMPANY WHERE THERE IS NO EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK. i HAVE EXHAUSTED MY pto DAYS AND WAS ORDERED BY MY DOCTOR TO TAKE A WEEK OFF AND SUBMITTED THE DOCTORS NOTE TO MY BOSS.
    THE EMPLOYER DOES NOT DEDUCT PAY, INSTEAD IF WE EXHAUST OUR DAYS AND GO OVER, THEY SAY NEXT YEAR, INSTEAD OF HAVING 20 PTO DAYS, i WILL HAVE 13.
    CAN THE EMPLOYER DO THIS? ALSO, CAN THE EMPLOYER AT ANY GIVEN TIME DEDUCT THE DAYS WHEN THEY FEEL LIKE IT?

  241. Hello, my company allocates us 3 days of PSL per year and PTO depending on how many hours you work per period. My question is when we use a PSL day, we get deducted from our 3 PSL Days AND 8 Hours of our PTO. The company is “double dipping” because our PTO is also deducted along with the PSL. Is this legal?

  242. I had a unique situation and was wondering if you could lend some advice.

    I am an exempt employee in KY and my employer has mandated a 58 hr work week coming up. On top of the 58 hrs I will be working M-F, they are also requesting that an additional 8 hrs be worked the Sunday prior. I am not able to work the Sunday prior, therefore they have mentioned taking 8 hrs of my PTO for that.

    Is it lawful for an employer typically to make an exempt/salaried employee use PTO when they are already working more than 40 hrs in a given week?

  243. If i submit a time off request 5 weeks in advance, letting the employer know of a existing medical appointment, AND THE EMPLOYER NOT ONLY HONORS THE REQUEST, BUT ALSO GIVES YOU TWO MORE DAYS OFF FOR NO APPARENT REASON, BEING A FULL-TIME EMPLOYEE. cAN THEY SHORTEN YOUR HOURS BECAUSE OF A TIME OFF REQUEST?

  244. mY QUESTION IS,AS AN HR MANAGER WHAT POLICIES CAN YOU PUT AT WORK PLACE SO THAT EMPLOYEES SHOULD HAVE UNIFORM KNOCKING OFF TIME

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