Standards for timeliness (tardiness)

Can an employer in NC require there employees to come in early (unpaid) in order not to be late. For example I would have to come in early 10 minutes every day in order to account for the day unpredictable traffic would otherwise cause me to be late. Employees are forbidden to clock in more than 5 mins early and are considered late after 1 min.

1 answer  |  asked May 23, 2013 12:36 PM [EST]  |  applies to North Carolina

Answers (1)

Reagan Weaver
They can require their employees to be on time as long as they don't discriminate against a group of employees protected by law.

Sounds like a fertile field to discuss with the employer, as it seems ridiculous to make an issue out of 2-3 minutes, especially if you can give them the 2-3 minutes at the end of the day. But the employer has a right to set work rules and the policies behind the time work is supposed to begin may be strict for a reason. That would be a good place to start a discussion -- to ask why. You may find there is a historical reason based on employees abusing a 2-3 minute grace period and it became 5-10 minutes or worse. It's worth discussing if you can do it without becoming a lightning rod or looking disloyal to the company's legitimate right to expect you to be there on time, but not early.

If you are clocked in before the start time, I think the employer is supposed to pay you for time from that point forward. I expect that is why you cannot clock in more than 5 minutes early.

posted by Reagan Weaver  |  May 26, 2013 7:40 PM [EST]

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