Will I get food and walkies even if I nap?
Jeff ponders the rules about sleeping while you work which he often does.
I enjoy a good sleep in the office but for some people, I understand that sleeping is actually part of their work. Some might say that’s lucky and a great job to have.
Those who work in the care industry, either residential or domiciliary care, may be employed on waking or sleeping shift overnight. The question very often posed is whether the sleeping time is actually working time or is it only those times when an employee is awake and engaged in work that counts?
How the time is categorised directly impacts on how that employee should be paid. Generally, where the employee is away from their own home, sleeping in but on duty in the event of a problem, and is not able to leave at any time or conduct their own business then the whole time, whether asleep or not, the total time spent will be working time. As such the amount payable to the employee for that total time must comply with the living or minimum wage regulations. This means that when calculating the level of pay for the whole of the employees working time (including any other shifts), the employee must receive the living or minimum wage for the whole of that relevant period.
A recent tribunal case has again highlighted this problem leaving employers vulnerable to back pay claims and fines from HMRC for their failure to meet regulatory standards. For the moment enforcement is temporarily suspended until 2nd October.
As an office dog I sleep a lot under different people’s desks during the day but I also sleep at home at night. Is some of that sleep more important than other sleep and how should I be paid?
It’s a bit puzzling but I am sure that any further advice can be obtained by ringing our help line.