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Using paper schedule as "time card" - question California

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  • Using paper schedule as "time card" - question California

    My employer currently marks a paper copy of the schedule as the "master" schedule and has us all sign it at the end of the week as our "time card."

    My question is... since that master copy has all of the changes we make day to day based on actual hours worked, is my employer obligated to provide us a copy of THAT specific schedule if we ask for one?

    I usually take it home and photocopy it and bring it right back. But they don't want it to leave the store. But they refuse to give us a photocopy of it with the changes on it because they won't pay us for the changes, only what we were scheduled, and they don't want us having a copy apparently.

    I sneak it out and in fairly well, but I'm wondering if that schedule is considered our time card if there is any law regarding employers obligation to allow us to keep a copy.

  • #2
    If you get caught sneaking this paper out of the building, I wouldn't be too suprised if you get fired, regardless of whether the law allows you to recieve a copy or not. I would recommend you stop this practice ASAP.

    I am assuming you are an hourly-wage, non-exempt employee?

    Are you paid for all hours worked? The only way to know this would be to:

    1) Consult your paycheck stub. If you were scheduled for 20 hours, and worked 30 hours, were you paid for 30 hours, or only 20 hours?

    2) Write down your day-to-day hours yourself in a journal. Include all break time and adjustments. When you are asked to sign the master schedule as your time card at the end of the week, consult your journal to make sure the times you have match the times you are signing for. If there are any discrepencies, don't sign the master schedule, and address them with management at that time. If need be you can request, NICELY, that the manager of the shift, or some other superior, sign or initial your daily journal to acknowledge that they agree the times your wrote down for that day are the times actually worked.

    3) If the management won't allow the master schedule to leave the store, request a meeting with management to consult the master schedule together. Make sure you have your most recent paycheck stub with you so you can confirm that you are getting paid based on actual hours worked, regardless of whatever changes are being made on a day-to-day basis. Address discrepencies then.

    If your employer gives you any flack for the above, you might need to consult a labor lawyer, or make a complaint to the state labor board.

    That is, assuming you are an hourly-wage non-exempt employee. If you are salaried in any way, or qualify as exempt, then your employer only has to pay you what your salary is regardless of whatever schedule changes are made or how many hours are worked in the week. Overtime laws may apply depending upon the nature of your work and the percentage of time you spend doing non-exempt labors.

    I don't quite understand why your employer doesn't "pay you for the changes." If you were schedule to work 12pm-8pm, and instead worked 1pm-9pm, you should be getting paid for 8-hours either way (not including whatever lunch times, etc). If your schedule was changed from 12pm-4pm, then you should be paid for the 4-hours. If you work 12pm-10pm, then you should be paid 10 hours (less any lunch time, etc).


    • #3
      They can fire me if they want to, I make copies because they won't pay us and I have no proof that I've actually worked the hours without it. I'm planning on filing a wage claim later maybe in a year when I'm gone. I'm really not worried about my job. If they fired me, I could turn around and sue them for so many labor violations that they'd have to back pay around 50 employees and the health violations alone would get them shut down... and they know this, so I'm not worried.


      • #4
        Well, the thing is - they force us to sign it or we don't get paid. They admit that they know it takes ten minutes to close, but they refuse to pay that ten minutes unless we work alone closing because they don't want to. They admit this in emails to me all the time. I always write it down in a journal and paper time card, and then I tell them I worked until 7:40 not 7:30 because it takes ten minutes to shut down the register and make the deposit. But they say they won't pay it, and if we don't sign it we don't get paid at all.

        If we have to stay because someone else is late, they won't pay it. Not even 5 minutes. We run a 2 man show, can't function without 2 people during rush hour, so people are obligated to stay because of company policy that we can't be alone for more than ten minutes.

        They're just shady. I copy the schedules because they knowingly have us sign false time cards and they ignore the changes even when they are the ones who ask us to stay.

        I will probably end up filing a claim when I'm gone... but for now I have to keep things low key until I figure it out. I'm already in the middle of a class action suit against my former employer for the exact same junk... so I'm covering my butt making sure I have a record of my time as recorded in my handwriting so they can't say I never worked those hours.


        • #5
          It is the employer's legal responsibility to keep accurate records of time worked for nonexempt employees and the law does not mandate any particular method.

          You should keep your own records of actual time worked, at home. I agree that it may be more of an uphill battle if/when you file a claim for unpaid time, but because you are required to sign this record to receive your paycheck, you will have a good argument that you signed "under duress".

          The employer MAY round in/out times to the nearest quarter-hour (no more), but that must be done consistently (no matter to whose benefit the result accrues). Have you questioned this at all with the employer? Why do they say they are not paying you for the extra time?
          I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.


          • #6
            His response was "I think its hogwash that it takes you guys 10 minutes to close, I don't want to pay you to close when you have two people. If you're by yourself I will pay 15 minutes extra but alone you don't get paid past the time we close"

            Basically we can't shut anything down early, and it takes 10 minutes to close by washing the last dishes properly and making the deposit and entering it into the computer. He said he knows it takes time but sales don't reflect the need for two people to close and we should be faster. He told me don't wash and sanitize dishes just rinse them and put them back, I told him I can't do that because that's against health code regulations plus I'm certified I know better. He said to do it anyway. So we have milky residue nasty dishes sitting there overnight and deposits that aren't done.

            Corporate said we can leave even if everything isn't done, but they fire people for doing so. They really refuse to pay us. They're ignorant I think.


            • #7
              "With one person closing out the register and one person dumping the coffee and cleaning the triple, it should not take more than 10 minutes to close with two people."

              "We don't pay for the last 5-10 minutes because a lot of people of take multiple break while working."

              " I see people sit in their cars talking with friends while it's not busy and etc, etc. Even all these, I think it is a wash that you guys stay extra 5 to 10 minutes."

              So because he drives by and sees us taking a break, he has no idea if it's a legitimate break or not because he refuses to make us keep track of our legitimate breaks (although I always do). I don't take ANY breaks really. I stay in the store. No one I work with takes multiple breaks. They take their allowed breaks. I told him to keep track so he could verify the time and he said it was too much trouble.

              So I told him that it literally takes 10 minutes to make the deposit even when we pre count the register, there is no escaping it. One person or two it takes the same amount of time. We can't close the register down early, so we're screwed. I get out of there in ten minutes by myself or with another person. He doesn't get it. And blames it on the breaks other people take.

              He said he'd think about paying us, but then decided he doesn't want to. So he came in an showed me how to close faster... and that was when he told me to just rinse the dishes and precount the register.

              On days when we get a rush last minute the precount thing doesn't work because then we have to recount everything that goes in and comes out down to the last dime and penny... and it takes longer to close and he tells us basically that we are stupid if we can't all do the math in our heads. But yet it all has to be perfect on paper. And it never is because the computer system is whack and the deposits are always off bc credit cards are never accounted for IN the drawer so that's more math for us to do...

              Its crazy...


              • #8
                And you still work for these people...why? Honestly, it seems like it would be more trouble than it is worth to bring up complaints and litigation against these people than it would be just to leave. I understand some people have strong moral imperatives and a sense of justice, but to quit, wait a year, THEN bring up wage complaints against a former employer just seems, well, petty. If you honestly and truely don't give a crap about the job, quit now, file your complaints now. Why punish yourself any longer and get any further aggrivated.

                Yes, this employer is a crappy employer, but all the struggle you're going through to bring litigation against them, especially when you've done it to another employer in the past, just seems excessive to me.


                • #9
                  1- no commute at all literally
                  2- i make more money in 3 hours than normal people do in 8 hours
                  3- i love my job and my customers
                  4- i have no stress on the job ever
                  5- i only work a few hours and have the rest of the day to do what i want
                  6- i set my own schedule basically
                  7- i do things by the book, the health codes, and if they have issues with it i tell them they're violating the codes and if they choose not to follow it or argue with me then all i have to do at that point is call the health department and the labor board and then ill quit
                  8- its really not a hassle for me, im just asking a simple question about time cards

                  i have all the proof i need to file a wage claim when i choose to do so. i have 3 years. why bother now? its not affecting me. you talk as though you think i actually am bothered by it. im asking a question so that i know what they are and are not legally obligated to do, whether or not you believe this is a bad job (which its not) is not relevant to the question.

                  if you dont have anything to offer regarding my question then go make assumptions elsewhere...


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