DOL Provides Work From Home Guidance
August 27, 2020
The Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has published guidance addressing employer obligations to track employee hours while teleworking. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employers are required to compensate employees for all “hours worked.” Hours worked includes any time the employee spent that was “suffered or permitted” by the employer, even if it is not requested or authorized by the employer. Importantly, the guidance applies a “reasonable diligence” standard to determine when employers have “reason to believe” work was performed. This standard focuses on what work time employers should have known about, not what they could have known. Though employers could be liable if they actually know of an employee working uncompensated hours, employers are not required to sift through any available data (e.g., network access times or phone calls to supervisors) to determine whether employees are accurately recording time.