If I get paid hourly, do I have legal right to go after my employer for not paying me to be on call 24 hours a day?

UPDATED: Sep 29, 2022

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If I get paid hourly, do I have legal right to go after my employer for not paying me to be on call 24 hours a day?

I have been given a cell phone to take any call that comes through for our program. I asked in the very beginning of the cell phone how I would be paid and they just said 15 min any time I get a call. However my is on line and I was instructed to pick up any call that come through at any time.

Asked on September 14, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

If  you get paid hourly, you have to be paid for all time spent working. As a practical matter, de minimis time is not tracked or paid--e.g. sporadic or occasional minute or two "check in" calls. But in theory, all time should be paid however, they do  not need to round or gross time up, so if you work, say, 6 minutes by phone one night, they only need to pay you for 1/10th of an hour. E.g. if paid $18.00/hour, that's be an extra $1.80. If you have to decide if it the amount of time you do work is worth documenting, tracking, and then pushing if necessary, by litigation to get.

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