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Thread: Wage Claim Question Wisconsin

  1. #1
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    Default Wage Claim Question Wisconsin

    I work at a recreation program for students with disabilities. It is a full-time position (8am-4:30pm, w/ 30min break, five days a weeK) but seasonal (seven weeks during the summer). Tomorrow we are taking the students on a field trip, and our boss told us that breaks will not be allowed as a result, although we are still working the same hours. I asked if that meant we were getting paid 8 1/2 hours for the day, to which he replied "Yes."

    Later, he reversed this decision, citing a letter of acceptance for the position that we as employees received prior to the start of work that states no employee will be paid for more than 40 hours/week. The letter, as it reads, states that: "Employees may not work over 40 hours per week for the Recreation Department," but says nothing about not being paid for working more than 40 hours.

    I'm not sure what to do at this point. I know it is not legally required to allow for break time at work, butit seems they are unwilling to pay for more than the typical eight hours. Is there anything I can do?

  2. #2
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    This is maybe complicated.
    - Rules are different for private sector and governmental employers. Which do you have?
    - Assuming that we are are talking about a normal private sector employer, then the employer must pay overtime for hours worked past 40 in the workweek, but can legally fire employees for working the overtime in the first place. In your particular case, you are being order to work 8.5 in a day, so apparently following orders. The employer could legally tell you to only work 7.5 hours a different day. But there will always be this complication that while there is generally (for private sector employers) a right to paid overtime there is no right to work overtime.
    - Assuming however that we are talking about a governmental employer, then there is a real possibility that "comp time" becomes possible. A lot of labor law gets strange whenever governmental employers get involved.
    http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/regs/compliance/whdfs23.pdf
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
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  3. #3
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    Thank you for your reply!

    I work for a public school system, so I would think that the "government" label applies here.

  4. #4
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    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
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