Our wage and hour attorneys were recently asked: Are employers required to pay employees for holidays? The answer: well, it depends.
Employers are not required to pay non-exempt employees for holidays. Non-exempt employees are those employees subject to the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). An employer only needs to pay its non-exempt employees for time actually worked. An employer may certainly elect to provide paid holidays to non-exempt employees as a discretionary benefit, but it is by no means required to do so. However, as with other employment law situations, this discretionary benefit has to be applied equally so as not to discriminate against members of a protected class. For example, an employer cannot pay just men or just Caucasian employees for the holiday time. While this would not be a violation of the FLSA, it would certainly violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. As such, this would be a case of gender discrimination or race discrimination – but the employee would still have an employment law claim.
On the other hand, the FLSA does not permit employers to deduct money from the salary of their exempt employees (salaried employees who are not entitled to overtime) for holidays. As a general rule, if an exempt employee works any portion of a workweek, he or she must be paid for days in which they are ready, willing and able to work. In other words, an employer who gives an exempt employee the day off for a holiday must paid that employee his or her weekly salary if he or she works any hours during the week in which the holiday falls.
Of course, this also means that if an exempt employee does not perform any work at all during a payroll week, his or her employer is not required to pay the employee his or her salary for that week. On the other hand, if the exempt employee works even one hour during that payroll week, his or her employer must pay the employee his or her entire salary for that week.
If you have been denied minimum wages or not paid time and a half for your overtime hours, or even think that you might need an employment lawyer, then call the right attorney to schedule a free and confidential consultation at (216) 291-4744. The Spitz Law Firm and its attorneys are experienced and dedicated to protecting employees’ wage rights under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Ohio wage law. The opportunity to meet directly with a wage and hour lawyer is just a phone call away. Your best choice is not to wait.
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