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  • NC Hiring law North Carolina

    My wife works for a chiropractor. She has just been told that if either she or another person in the same position doesn't give up an extra day a week (she already works 6) to take an unpaid course on how to use an x ray machine, they will both be fired. The problem is, in order to have them pay for the class, they will have to sign a paper saying she will work there for at least a year afterwards, which she is definitely not considering to be an option considering this and the many other similarly shady situations she has been required to navigate since beginning to work there. She was just given an excellent performance review and a raise. Is it legal for them to do this? If you need more specifics, just let me know

    Also just wanted to add that she was not made aware of anything of this nature prior to her hiring, this is considered to be an entry level job with no training requirements in NC.
    Last edited by jwolfe; 01-04-2011, 01:06 PM.

  • #2
    Is she exempt or non-exempt under the FLSA? If you don't know, please give us as detailed a description as you can of her job duties.

    You really have two separate issues here. One is whether or not she must be paid to take this class; the second is whether or not an agreement to stay a year after they take the class is enforceable. The two issues are not connected to each other.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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    • #3
      Not sure, let's see she hooks patients up to the electrical stem machines prior to being seen by the chiropractors, answers phones, takes blood pressure during the initial exam, files and does entry work, and occasionally cleans. From my brief reading on FLSA, I would say she is non exempt (she is a normal hourly worker, just recieved a raise from 9-10 dollars per hr).

      The class in question is a full day per week for a month, which would be in addition to a 6 day work week.
      Last edited by jwolfe; 01-04-2011, 01:14 PM.

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      • #4
        I agree, she sounds nonexempt to me also.

        Since the class is job-related, she must be paid for the time.
        I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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        • #5
          The other half of the question is the legality of the agreement that the employee must work for an additional year. Probably illegal, although an agreement that "work one more year or repay the training cost" might be legal. That is the sort of thing where a local attorney has to read the actual agreement.

          Agreed with Patty's answer, although the payment could be made at minimum wage if proper notification occured.
          "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
          Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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