Q & A Session – Workday Requirements


Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience.


What are the regulations for when a workday begins? Is it when you enter the building or your office?


Generally, the head of each Agency establishes the work requirements for the basic workweek. Check with your human resources office to get a copy of the policy.

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), any walking and waiting time that occurs after the employee engages in his or her first principal activity and before he or she finishes his or her last principle activity, is part of the “continuous workday” and is compensable under the FLSA. The “workday” is defined as “the period between the commencement and completion on the same workday of an employee’s principal activity or activities.” Under the FLSA, it appears that the time spent entering a federal property and passing through security in the building do not qualify as the commencement of the workday.

Bill Bransford is managing partner of Shaw, Bransford & Roth, PC.

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About Author

Debra Roth

Debra L. Roth is a partner at the law firm Shaw Bransford & Roth, a federal employment law firm in Washington, D.C. She is general counsel to the Senior Executives Association and the Federal Managers Association, host of the “FEDtalk” program on Federal News Radio, and a regular contributor to Federal News Radio’s “Federal Drive” morning show. Email your legal questions to lawyer@federaltimes.com.

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