Overtime pay: do I have to take comp time instead?

comp time

My current employer has me working ten hours on some days, then requires me to take straight comp time instead of overtime pay (which is 1.5 times the usual rate). Is my employer violating the law in refusing overtime pay for my work beyond eight hours a day or 40 a week?

Wisconsin law allows employers an option to pay employees time-and-a-half for hours exceeding 40 per week or to compensate employees by altering a schedule, according to employment attorney Ellen Frantz. "If you work one hour of overtime on Monday, then your schedule may be altered to work only seven hours on Tuesday. When you are compensated with time, it’s on an hour-for-hour basis; the time-and-a-half provision does not apply."

Employers, however, must provide the compensatory time in the same pay period as the extra hours worked, added Frantz. If you are paid weekly, for example, that adjustment for time must be made in the same week as the extra hours worked. If you are paid every other week, the work hours could be adjusted over the two-week pay period.employment lawyer

Information provided by employment law attorney Ellen Frantz of Johns, Flaherty & Collins, SC. For an employment lawyer in La Crosse, WI, call 608-784-5678.

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