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Rules for mileage reimbursement

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  • Rules for mileage reimbursement

    I use my personal vehicle to visit my clients which my employer pays me $0.50 for every mile. But, they do not pay me from the mileage from where I start (usually my home) to my first client. Only after my first client visit is finished do they pay me the mileage until my last client is done. After the last client they don't pay for the return trip back (usually home).

    I have since learned that if there is a time of 40-60min.lapse between visits, they will not pay for that mileage for the following visit after the break. Can they do that? What is the law regarding reimbursement for mileage when using your personal vehicle?

  • #2
    I live in California, by the way.

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    • #3
      This is a grey area. I understand their argument. There is a federal law (Portal-to-Portal-Act) that says commutes are not hours worked. Now you are talking expense, not hours worked, meaning the CLC 2802 law. If you were driving to a normal 8-5 job, then I am certain that CA-DLSE will say that not only is the commute unpaid, but that commuting mileage is also unpaid. I am certain that if your "stops" were tightly spaced in time, that CA-DLSE would say that the between "stops" mileage are paid (and that the time spent driving is also hours worked). The "hours worked" and expense reimbursement for the related drive rules are not completely in sync with each other legally, but the rules are more similar then different.

      What your employer is arguing is that you have enough time between stops to effectively use the time for your own purposes. It is not a bad argument legally, but is not necessarily a certain argument. I have not heard CA-DLSE make a hard decision in this area. Meaning maybe your employer is right. Maybe your employer is not right. At the end of the day CA-DLSE has to make a decision. Document all of this, and file a wage claim. It works or it does not.
      "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
      Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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