What Duties Are Integral and Indispensable?

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) applies to most workers in the United States and provides that employees are entitled to earn at least minimum wage, and non-exempt employees must be paid overtime compensation at a rate of one and one half times their standard rate of pay for all time spent working in excess of forty hours in any one work week. Often wage and hour lawsuits are the result of the failure of employers to properly compensate workers for all time spent on the job.

If you have questions about your pay or believe that you may not have received all the compensation you deserve, it is important to consult with an experienced Atlanta wage and hour attorney right away.

As part of the FLSA, employers must compensate their employees for all time on the job – this calculation includes times spent performing duties that are “integral and indispensable” to their principal work activities. Defining just what are “integral and indispensable” duties is often a point of confusion for employers and for the courts. Recently, the Supreme Court determined that time spent going through mandatory anti-theft security screens before leaving work did not constitute an integral and indispensable part of warehouse employee’s work.

Justice Clarence Thomas explained, “[A]n activity is not integral and indispensable to an employee’s principal activities unless it is an intrinsic element of those activities and one with which the employee cannot dispense if he is to perform those activities.”

While in this situation the activities were not considered “integral,” other required activities such as donning security equipment, have been found to be “integral” and compensable.

For more information, or if you have concerns that you haven’t been paid all you rightfully deserve, please contact the experienced Atlanta FLSA attorneys at Buckley Bala Wilson Mew LLP for an immediate, confidential case evaluation.