Many employees are required to perform both preliminary and “postliminary” tasks before and after their actual jobs. In a post on the Ohio Employer’s Law Blog, Jon Hyman, a partner in the labor and employment group at Kohrman Jackson & Krantz, discusses a case before the U.S. Supreme Court that could help decide whether these employees must be paid for the time.
The case is Busk v. Integrity Staffing Solutions. Hyman says the court will consider whether time spent in security screenings is compensable under the Fair Labor Standards Act, as amended by the Portal-to-Portal Act. He says the plaintiffs in Busk argue they should be paid for spending up to 25 minutes going through a required security check at the end of their shifts.
He says that the FLSA, under the Portal-to-Portal Act, generally precludes preliminary and postliminary compensation unless the activities are “integral and indispensable” to an employee’s principal duties. The Ninth Circuit concluded the plaintiffs sufficiently alleged the security clearances were necessary to their primary work as warehouse employees.
Busk is the second such case the U.S. Supreme Court will hear. In Sandifer v. U.S. Steel, it decided that employee time spent putting on and taking off protective gear was not compensable under the collective-bargaining agreement.