I work in a hospital and my schedule is 830am to 5pm. Sometimes we are required to work passed 5pm because there are still patients to be attended. But then, we are asked to come in late or leave early so we are not paid overtime. Is this legal? Can I refuse to work passed 5pm if not paid overtime?
Question regarding overtime: Your employer is allowed by law to control the amount of time you work "on the clock" in order to avoid paying overtime. However, there are legal limits controlling this employment practice which are covered under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). You can call the federal Department of Labor (or go online) for more specific information.
Question regarding refusal to work past 5 pm: Sure, you can do that; but your employer can terminate your employment if you do that. Why? Because Florida is an “at will employment” state--which means Florida employers are free to hire, assign, re-assign, re-locate, promote, demote, discipline, suspend or terminate employees “at will.” They do no not have to give employees any reason either.
Unfortunately, your employer has the right to ask you to leave early and can adjust your schedule to avoid overtime. Your employer is not allowed to ask you to work off the clock or reduce time from your timesheet. But the employer has the right to change your schedule.
Hope this helps.
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