Do I have to be paid for being on call to work in Texas?

If scheduled to be “on call” as part of your employment, you may be eligible to receive pay based on the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Texas Payday Law for at least minimum wage. If it is more than forty hours and you are not a salaried, exempt employee, then also overtime pay. On call pay issues are complex because a few facts can completely change the wage claim.

Does your employment have to pay for on call time in Texas?

Whether your employer must pay you for on call time depends on a few factors:

  • Your employer may have a policy of paying for on call time even though it doesn’t have to. While your employer may have to pay you for on call time they may choose to voluntarily. They cannot discriminate on any prohibited basis in denying you on call time under their voluntary policy.
  • You have an employment contract and the contract says they do. If you work under an employment contract that requires pay for on call time, your employer must follow the contract.
  • You are a union employee and your collective bargaining agreement says so.
  • If you are properly classified as an exempt, salaried employee performing exempt duties your employer does not have to pay you for being on call. As an exempt employee you are not paid for your work on an hourly basis. You receive pay for the performance of your job duties. Therefore, your employer would not pay you for time waiting to come to work. However, you may be misclassified as salaried and exempt and possibly entitled to pay while on call. You may also be properly classified as exempt but performing non-exempt work. Then your employer may owe wages for the on call time.
  • If you are an hourly employee with on call time, you may receive wages for on call time if it sufficiently limits what you can do with your time while on call. If you must remain on property and limited how you spend your free time then your employer probably owes wages. However, if free to spend your time however you want until called in then you probably owed pay.

Schedule a consultation with a Dallas employment lawyer

If your employer does not pay for on call time entitled to pay you may miss out on substantial wages. That time may also receive overtime pay if the combination of working hours and on call hours exceeds forty hours. Unpaid overtime and minimum wage claims allow you to recover attorney’s fees and court costs so there is little reason to not contact an employment lawyer in Texas to discuss your case.  Visit the unpaid wage and overtime page for more information about your rights to pay under federal and Texas law.

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