Can my employer require me to check my email off the clock?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can my employer require me to check my email off the clock?

My boss says that it is mandatory that we check our work email once a day, even
on our days off. Can they do this, and do they have to play me for that time?

Asked on August 23, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Connecticut


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

1) Yes, they can require you to do this: the employer determines when you work, and can require you to work off your normal schedule (e.g. on days off).
2) The law doesn't require them to pay for "de minimis" time you spend not a work, but if it takes more than a few minutes, you should be paid, even if it's not your normal work time. Track the time; if it takes you more than 5 minutes, they should start having to pay you for it.
This assumes you are an hourly employee. If salaried, they do not owe you any extra money; your weekly salary is your total compensation for *all* work during the week.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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