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  • Odd rounding

    My employer appears to be rounding oddly.
    They break up hours into six minute intervals.
    They add all the hours for the day together and round according to the following rules:
    08:00->08:00
    08:01->08:00
    08:02->08:00
    08:03->08:00
    08:04->08:06
    08:05->08:06
    So, If I work from 06:00am to 11:00am, 11:30am to 02:33pm, all the hours are added together to get 8:03 hours and this is rounded down to 8:00 hours.
    Is that Legal?

  • #2
    Yes time clock rounding is legal per the DOL.

    http://www.dol.gov/dol/allcfr/Title_...9CFR785.48.htm

    Comment


    • #3
      The FLSA basically states that a rounding method is legal if the employee is paid for "substantially" all time worked. In the case you specifically mentioned, this type of rounding would be OK, because you are getting the same result as if your clock-out time were rounded down to 2:30.

      Generally speaking, with very limited exceptions (that my mind is a little too fried to think up at this point), this rounding method would be acceptable.
      I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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      • #4
        so it does not matter that four minutes out of six are rounded down and only two are rounded up?

        indeed, very odd.

        " (b) ``Rounding'' practices. It has been found that in some
        industries, particularly where time clocks are used, there has been the
        practice for many years of recording the employees'

        starting time and stopping time

        to the nearest 5 minutes, or to the nearest one-tenth or
        quarter of an hour. Presumably, this arrangement averages out so that
        the employees are fully compensated for all the time they actually work.
        For enforcement purposes this practice of computing working time will be
        accepted, provided that it is used in such a manner that it will not
        result, over a period of time, in failure to compensate the employees
        properly for all the time they have actually worked."

        They do not round the start and end times mind you, just the total hours. so they are not rounding 2 down to 2:30, they are adding all hours worked, and rounding 8 hours 3 minutes down to 8 hours.

        This method appears to result in a failure to compensate properly for all time worked.

        example:
        Monday:8 hours rounded to 8 hours
        Tuesday:8 hours 1 minute rounded to 8 hours
        Wednesday:8 hours 2 minutes rounded to 8 hours
        Thursday:8 hours 3 minutes rounded to 8 hours
        Friday:8 hours 4 minutes rounded to 8 hours 6 minutes
        Saturday:8 hours 5 minutes rounded to 8 hours 6 minutes

        If they were rounding the time in and out, I understand the law, but the are rounding total hours, and I do not know if that is legal?

        --

        "The FLSA basically states that a rounding method is legal if the employee is paid for "substantially" all time worked. In the case you specifically mentioned, this type of rounding would be OK, because you are getting the same result as if your clock-out time were rounded down to 2:30. "

        but if I clocked in at 5:57am and out at 2:30pm I would still only be paid for eight hours, not eight hours six minutes.

        This is what leads me to confusion.

        (tried to respond to both, sorry if it is confusing)

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        • #5
          Either way, you are still substantially being paid for all time worked. Employers are allowed to round as much as 15 minutes.
          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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          • #6
            Thanks, one last question

            Is there a law that says that employers are allowed to round (down) total hours by any amount less than fifteen minutes, or is it one of those "employers are not restricted from totalling hours and rounding down, so it is legal by default" situations?

            P.S. I find it especially odd that they total the hours, and then round, rather than the other way around.

            Comment


            • #7
              It may be odd, but there is no law prohibiting it. As we've said, as long as the employees end up getting paid for "substantially" all hours worked, the employer can round any way they want. The reason that 15-minutes is mentioned as the outside rounding limit is that anything outside that will more than likely result in the employees NOT getting paid for "substantially" all hours worked.
              I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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              • #8
                Thanks everyone!

                at least it is only a minute. I'm certain there are far worse out there.

                Again, Thanks so much for all your help!

                Comment


                • #9
                  And actually, I just thought of something, that this rounding method could actually work to your advantage.

                  Let's say you started working 6 minutes before starting time, clocked out for lunch 6 minutes before scheduled time, locked back in 3 minutes before lunch period was over, and clocked out to go home 6 minutes after the scheduled time. Under the 15-minute rounding method, the employer could round EACH punch to the nearest 15 minutes, which would mean NO overtime for that day. With the current method you have 21 extra minutes over your scheduled time and you would get overtime (from the way I understood your original post) for 21 minutes. All in all, not a bad deal!
                  I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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