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Paid for Drivetime in CA? California

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  • Paid for Drivetime in CA? California

    I am a full-time, hourly manager in CA. My current commute is less than 1 mile. Lately I have been helping out at other stores in the area, ranging from 15 - 50 miles away. My company DOES reimburse for mileage at the current IRS rate. I am wondering if they are obligated to reimburse me for drivetime if it exceeds a certain amount beyond my normal commute. Also, there have a few instances where, due to scheduling, I have actually worked less than 8 hours in a day but have had an hour to an hour and a half commute. Are they obligated to pay that (since I'm guaranteed 40 hours, correct?) or is it at their discretion?

  • #2
    I'll let one of the payroll and/or CA experts answer the details, but no, you are not guaranteed 40 hours. Wherever did you get that idea?
    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
      Originally posted by cbg View Post
      I'll let one of the payroll and/or CA experts answer the details, but no, you are not guaranteed 40 hours. Wherever did you get that idea?
      I believe I am guaranteed 40 hours, at least by my company's standards as listed in our handbook. Unfortunately, I'm away from home AND work at the moment and don't have access to it.

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      • #4
        You may be guaranteed it by company policy, but you are not guaranteed it by law and the law is not going to force your employer to pay for time you did not work, whether for scheduling reasons or any 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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        • #5
          Copy that, it makes sense.

          Any ideas on the whole drivetime issue? I searched, but sadly, found nothing, which leads me to believe I am out of luck.

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          • #6
            The California Supreme Court addressed the issue of "travel time" in the case of Morillion v. Royal Packing. The Court held that it was necessary to "distinguish between travel that the employer specifically compels and controls and an ordinary commute that employees take on their own."

            The Court in Morillion concluded that farm workers who were required to meet at designated departure points at a certain time to ride the employer's buses to work were under the control of the employer and entitled to be compensated for that time. The Court noted that "this conclusion should not be considered as holding that all travel time to and from work is compensable." The question then becomes: What is "compulsory" travel time and what is "an ordinary commute?" DLSE has taken the position that travel involving a substantial distance from the assigned work place to a distant work site to report to work on a short-term basis is compensable travel time.

            The travel time is measured by the difference between the time it normally takes the employee to travel from his or her home to the assigned work place and the time it takes the employee to travel from home to the distant work site.
            Barry S. Phillips, CPA
            www.BarryPhillips.com

            IRS Circular 230 Disclosure: This response is intended to provide general information and written for educational purposes only. It does not establish a client relationship. This communication is not intended to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding tax-related penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to any party any matters addressed herein.

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            • #7
              How is that time compensated for? I brought this up once to my company and they informed me that being paid for mileage was the appropriate way to compensate me. On that particular time, I pushed it and they agreed to compensate me for drivetime of one hour for 4 days.

              The problem is that for the next couple of days, I'm looking at an hour commute one way and wondering if that is something i can be compensated for when this is outside the normal duties of my job.

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              • #8
                KHanson: my company informed me that being paid for mileage was the appropriate way to compensate me.

                For the use of your car - yes, but not necessarily for your time.
                Barry S. Phillips, CPA
                www.BarryPhillips.com

                IRS Circular 230 Disclosure: This response is intended to provide general information and written for educational purposes only. It does not establish a client relationship. This communication is not intended to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding tax-related penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to any party any matters addressed herein.

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                • #9
                  Thank you. How do I address my company? Is there a labor code that I can present them? Or do I just say it's precedent?

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                  • #10
                    Starting on page 166:
                    http://www.dir.ca.gov/dlse/DLSEManua...enfcmanual.pdf
                    I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

                    Comment

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