Freeburg, IL asked in Employment Law for Illinois

Q: Is there a limit on how much a employer can require an exempt employee to be on call and near campus with out a stipend?

Employer requiring a exempt employee to be on call for at least 2 weeks per month. This is a 24/7 on call for these two weeks, the employee would be required to be available for remote assistance and not leave the area to be able to respond to campus if needed with in 30 to 40 minutes. The would limit this employee on after hours of leaving the area, having a drink, taking a trip with the family because of the possibility of having to go into work.

My question is there a limit of time that the employer could require an employee to be on this type of on call and without any kind of stipend?

History behind this, I along with other employees were hired with the understanding that we would be on call for 2 weeks per month however there would be a stipend. The company is making cuts and is still requiring us to be on call this amount of time however no stipend or compensation for being available or responding to a call.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Carrie Dyer
Carrie Dyer

A: You must be paid for time spent actually working while on call. However, whether the entire on-call shift must be paid depends on a variety of factors. Typically, if you are not required to remain on the employer's premises and instead are only required to be reachable while using that time for your own purposes (including sleeping), it is not compensable time. This also depends on how frequently you receive calls and how much of the on-call shift is spent actually working. Unless the requirements are unusually onerous, your employer does not have to pay you for the entire on-call shift. You should contact an employment attorney in your area to discuss the specifics of your situation.

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