Attorneys James T. Carey and P. Zachary Stewart

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Why do some employees get paid for sleeping on the job?

On Behalf of | Dec 30, 2020 | Overtime And Wage Issues

Many employers regard sleeping on the job as a bad thing. However, certain industries require their employees to get some rest throughout their shifts. Most of these include occupations where employees have to be at their workplaces for long periods of time.

A few examples of the types of eligible employees include truck drivers and airline pilots. So, for those employees, are they paid for their sleeping time?

What does employment law say?

One of the most important pieces of employment law to turn to when determining if an employer should pay you for your sleeping time is the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). In short, Congress passed this legislation to protect employees from substandard labor conditions.

Within this document, you can find the specific law that requires employers to provide compensation to their employees while they are sleeping. Of course, this comes with certain requirements, such as the shift lasting at least 24 hours or longer.

Examples of sleep time

It can be difficult to determine when employers should pay for sleep time, as some occupations tend to rely on outside factors for the job to be done correctly. For example, nursing home caretakers may be allowed to rest and even watch television, but they are required to wake up if a patient needs them. This means that they should expect their employer to pay them for the entire time they are working (excluding mandated breaks) within the facility.

Creating a reasonable agreement

In many cases, determining when work and sleep time occurs may be difficult to pinpoint. To eliminate any misunderstandings, you and your employer should take part in a reasonable agreement. These are usually implemented when an employee resides at their employer’s residence, such as maids or groundskeepers.

To ensure that your employer is properly compensating you for your time, you may wish to consult with an attorney. Doing so can prevent you from losing deserved wages.