Executing FLSA-Compliant Timekeeping Policies


Jeffrey M. Landes and Ann Knuckles Mahoney, attorneys in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management practice, in the firm’s New York office and Nashville offices, respectively, co-authored an article in Law360, titled “Executing FLSA-Compliant Timekeeping Policies.” (Read the full version – subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

This article focuses on several key timekeeping issues for employers and recommends policies and practices that allow employers to successfully navigate them under federal law. However, state law may also apply and could impose stricter standards.

Specifically, this article covers the following key timekeeping issues:

  • Off-the-clock work;
  • Rounding work time;
  • Overtime work;
  • Meal and rest periods;
  • Preshift and post-shift activities for nonexempt employees;
  • Training time for nonexempt employees; and
  • Additional considerations in light of COVID-19.

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, nonexempt employees must be paid for all time worked. Employers rarely run afoul of these requirements when tracking time and paying employees for work performed during normal work hours or assigned shifts.

However, employers must also track and pay for employees' time beyond normal hours or shifts. Employers should also keep in mind that what was considered normal may no longer be normal in light of the COVID-19 pandemic as many workers have shifted to working remotely.

Because what is and is not compensable time is not always clear and employees sometimes do not report all the time that they work, employers frequently fail to satisfy the full range of their FLSA obligations.