Stockton, CA asked in Employment Law for California

Q: Can a company deduct accrued time in increments of an hour on the hour if you're late or leave early during your shift?

We used to be allotted 20 hours of UPT every quarter and we're charged 1 hour for every segment of each hour that we were not on the clock, ie. *6-60 minutes late = 1 hour deducted

*(5 minute grace time)

61-120 mins. late = 2 hour deduction

early departure 1-60mins. = 1 hour deduction and so on.

Example. Shift 6pm-4:30am

Arrive at 6:07pm and depart at 4:15am = 2 hours deducted from your accrued UPT. It is no longer an allotment it is now an accrual but policy on how it's applied remained the same.

We have always accrued (earned) our PTO, which, if available, can be use to cover any missed time by the minute as well as our vacation which we can be scheduled off per the minute with a 24 hour notice and manager approval. Now because we accrue (earn) our UPT can they still deduct (basically steal) it by the hour when it is no longer "given" to us?

Related Topics:
2 Lawyer Answers
Brad S Kane
Brad S Kane
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: A company may have a rounding policy, but it must be neutral. Here the policy does not appear neutral. This means you and your co-workers are being cheated on your hours. There may be a possible class action or Private Attorney General Act claim. You should consult with an employment lawyer. Most provide free consultations.

Maya L. Serkova agrees with this answer

Maya L. Serkova
Maya L. Serkova
  • Orange, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: I agree with my colleague's response. This policy does not sound lawful. I suggest you consult with an experienced employment law attorney who will further examine your situation and explain your options. Most employment law attorneys in California offer free of charge initial consultations, and thereafter may take your case on a contingency basis, meaning you do not have to pay attorney’s fees unless and until there is a positive outcome for you. They may also advance either all or partial costs of litigation.

You can look either on this site in the Find a Lawyer section or go to California Employment Layers Association (, an organization whose members are committed to representing employees’ rights.


Maya L. Serkova

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.