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Connecticut- Snow day closure pay

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  • Connecticut- Snow day closure pay

    I am a administrative assistant for a small company in CT. I am a salary exempted employee and do not receive overtime pay and if I needed to come in late or leave early I am not docked. This is the definition of an exempted employee, right?
    I found out today by looking at pay stub that I was docked 8 hours because the company choose to close the office for snow. We were not told that we were going to be docked.This just doesn't seem right. I am hoping that someone can tell me if this legal? I have tried to look on the CT Dept of Labor web site but that site is not very user friendly.
    Please help!

    Thank you,

    Serina

  • #2
    If you truly are salaried exempt, then you must be paid for the day; however, you can legally be required to use vacation or other paid leave.

    However, you are wrong in your definition of a salaried exempt employee. It is the job DUTIES, not the way you are paid, that determines your exempt status. Salaried is only a pay method and has no legal status of its own.
    Last edited by cbg; 02-02-2011, 09:23 AM.
    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.

    Comment


    • #3
      Did they not pay you at all or did they charge the time (pay you) with vacation or
      other PTO? The last would be legal.
      Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

      Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

      Comment


      • #4
        FYI, you only have to be paid for the day if you ARE salaried exempt. If you are salaried non-exempt, you do not. Although it would be legal to require that you use vacation or PTO for the day either way.
        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.

        Comment


        • #5
          Per OP they are salaried exempt & have been treated as such - no OT, not being docked for being late/leaving early ...
          Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

          Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

          Comment


          • #6
            First, an administrative assistant does not usually qualify for exempt status. To see if you are truly exempt, consider your job duties, and visit both pages linked below to see where you seem to fit.

            Second, if you are actually exempt, he has docked your pay for a day that (I assume) you were ready, willing & able to come to work. If you did not have any PTO to cover that time out, you still needed to be paid for it.

            http://www.ctdol.state.ct.us/wgwkstn...our/exempt.htm
            http://www.ctdol.state.ct.us/wgwkstn...SalaryTest.htm

            The kicker is - if you are actually non-exempt, then he can dock your pay for that snow closure day (and you can use PTO to cover it). But then he has to pay for all actual time worked, including overtime if worked.

            Hope that helps. Good luck.

            Comment


            • #7
              Just for my own education, I wanted to know....

              I've read a bunch of times on this site that is you are Exempt, and you don't work at all on a given day, that you can be docked for that day (or have it charged to your PTO). But if you work even part of the day, you can't be docked. Now this thread is saying the person can't be docked a day, but they didn't work at all that day.
              Is that a Connecticut rule, or did I misunderstand the federal one?
              Or does it have to do with being out for the day voluntarily vs. the employer closing that day?

              Comment


              • #8
                The last. The employer chose to close the office. The employer may have a good reason, but not a reason recognized by 29 CFR 541.602 as a valid reason to dock the salary.

                The key is that no one made the employer classify the employee as Exempt Salaried. Assuming that the employee is really Exempt Salaried - different issue. But once the employer decides to treat the employee as Exempt Salaried, they cannot just pocket the unpaid overtime, but also have to follow the docking restrictions rules.

                Also, agreed with the other answers. The Exempt status for this employee needs to be reviewed with a critical eye.
                "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
                Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

                Comment


                • #9
                  An exempt employee who VOLUNTARILY does not work for a full day can be docked. The difference in this case is that the employer is the one who closed. Had the employer stayed open and the employee chose not to come in (even if prevented because of non-plowed driveways, iced-in cars, non-running busses, whatever) then even if exempt, the employee could have been docked. But since this was an employer and not an employee choice, an exempt employee must be paid, even if with vacation or PTO.
                  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.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Gotcha, thanks.
                    'cause I'm docking my people who called out for our non-existent ice storm today (we're always open for business).

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      You're ok there.
                      Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                      Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I haven't posted this for a while - maybe it's time to do it again.

                        There are six situations when an exempt employee does not have to be paid for the full week if they worked any part of that week:

                        1.) It is the first or last week of employment (and they did not work the entire week)
                        2.) The time that was missed is attributable to FMLA
                        3.) Assuming that the employer provides a reasonable number of sick days, the employee calls in sick at a time when he is either not yet eligible for any or has used all to which he is entitled
                        4.) The employee voluntarily takes off a full day
                        5.) The employee is suspended for a major safety violation
                        6.) The employee is suspended for violation of a written company policy that applies to all employees, and which relates to workplace conduct (workplace violence, sexual harassment, drugs/alcohol in the workplace, etc.)

                        #s 1-2 can be docked in full or partial days as applicable - #s 3-6 can only be docked in full day increments.

                        Your employees who called in for the non-storm fall under #4.
                        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.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          First I want to thank everyone for there response.

                          betty3 - They didn't tell me that they were going to dock me nor did they just take PTO, they just didn't pay me for the day.

                          cbg and jj brown - I read up on what makes someone true exempt employee and it seems that I do not fall in that category. I have been told that I am exempt and it is also mentioned in the handbook that the office staff is exempt. I also now understand that that does not mean anything. So now what? I have worked OT in the past but have not been paid for it.

                          Now I have another question. On the same day one of the girls in office worked from home that day and although she worked about 4 hours which is all she could do being most of her work (paperwork) was in the office. They docked her 4 hours. She's a purchasing and receiving manager and is also classified as exempt, should she have been docked or should she have been paid for a full day? I also do not think she is true exempt employee.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            There are something like 100 or exceptions in the FLSA law to minimum wage, overtime, or both. Many/most of these exceptions are industry specific (think "sheepherders"). All exceptions look at actual job duties.

                            There are a group of exceptions called the White Collar exceptions which are not industry specific. When people talk about Exempt office workers, this is generally what they are talking about. But each of these exceptions has actual rules that must be followed. Not just "magic words". A general rule of thumb is always look at the Executive exception first. It is is the easiest one to qualify for if there is supervision. Past that Administrative (possible but harder) or Professional (possible but narrow) or IT Professional (possible but narrow).

                            http://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/fairpay/main.htm
                            "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
                            Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Do you have time sheets? Are you keeping track of all your hours worked, despite the lack of OT pay? If not, you need to start. Make the best notes you can. Keep them at home, not on your work computer or stored in a drawer at work.

                              It sounds like this may affect more people in the office than just you, but you may have all been misclassified to avoid paying OT, which I am sure the DOL would love to hear. You can file a wage claim to get the process started.

                              Comment

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