FLSA Overtime Regulations: What Is “Compensable Time”?

Jul 13, 2023

Understanding FLSA Overtime Regulations

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) provides guidelines and regulations for employees' rights in the United States. It establishes standards related to minimum wage, overtime pay, and working hours. One crucial aspect of the FLSA is the definition of "compensable time" concerning overtime payments.

What Is Compensable Time?

Compensable time refers to the hours of work for which employees are entitled to compensation, including both regular wages and overtime pay when applicable. While regular hours are usually straightforward, determining compensable time for overtime calculation can be complex and involves various factors.

Factors Determining Compensable Time

Several factors contribute to determining compensable time:

  • 1. Actual work performed: Any time spent by employees performing job-related tasks, whether requested or not, is considered compensable.
  • 2. Travel time: Travel time that is work-related, such as attending conferences or client meetings, is usually compensable. Commuting to and from work generally isn't compensable unless there are specific circumstances involved.
  • 3. Waiting time: Employees who are required to wait, either on the employer's premises or at a designated location, should generally be compensated unless they are completely relieved from work duties during this time.
  • 4. On-call time: If employees are required to remain on-call, they may be entitled to compensation, whether they are ultimately called to work or not. The key factor is the level of restriction imposed on the employee during on-call periods.
  • 5. Meal and rest breaks: Short rest breaks (usually up to 20 minutes) are typically considered compensable, while unpaid meal breaks are generally not included as compensable time if employees are truly relieved from work duties during this period. However, state regulations and employment contracts may vary.
  • 6. Training and educational activities: Time spent on mandatory training and education, either during regular working hours or outside of regular working hours, is typically considered compensable time.

Legal Aspects and Employees' Rights

Employers must comply with FLSA regulations to ensure fair treatment of employees. Failure to accurately calculate compensable time for overtime pay can result in wage and hour violations, leading to legal consequences.

Employees have the right to:

  • 1. Receive overtime pay: Non-exempt employees, who are not exempt from FLSA overtime regulations, should receive additional compensation for hours worked beyond the standard 40-hour workweek.
  • 2. Keep accurate records: Employers are responsible for maintaining accurate records of hours worked by employees, including starting and ending times, breaks, and any additional compensable time.
  • 3. File complaints: If an employee believes their employer is not complying with FLSA regulations, they have the right to file a complaint with the local Wage and Hour Division office or pursue legal action.

Baytowne Reporting: Your Trusted Legal Services Partner

As a leading provider of legal services in the law and government industry, Baytowne Reporting understands the importance of complying with FLSA overtime regulations. We help businesses navigate the complexities of labor laws and ensure they meet their obligations towards employees.

Our team of experienced professionals offers comprehensive legal support, including:

  • Overtime calculation and compliance assistance
  • Policy and procedure review and implementation
  • Employee rights education and training
  • Legal representation in wage and hour disputes
  • Recordkeeping and documentation guidance

At Baytowne Reporting, we understand the importance of protecting both employers and employees' rights. Contact us today to learn more about how we can assist you with FLSA overtime regulations and ensure compliance with "compensable time" requirements.

Johnna McEntee
It's important to understand the concept of compensable time in FLSA overtime regulations.
Nov 11, 2023