Working During the Pandemic and Wage Issues
As coronavirus continues to spread, many employers are changing the rules of how and where employees can work. Taking direction from public health officials and others within the industry, more and more supervisors are allowing employees to work from home even as stay at home orders are lifted. In other cases, schedules have changed or hours have been reduced.
With so many changes happening at once, employees and employers likely have concerns over how these shifts will impact wage and hour considerations. If you have questions or feel your Ohio work situation is currently breaking laws, contact a Columbus employment attorney.
Who Is Responsible for Home Office Expenses?
One concern voiced by workers who are attending to work duties remotely is who should be paying the expenses that are accruing at their home office. Some of these expenses could include mobile phone bills, Internet plan expenses, office supplies and more.
While each situation is unique, one guideline is that an employee’s wage should never fall below minimum wage when taking those expenses into account. So, if the costs of conducting business are deducted from an employee’s pay and the total is less than minimum wage, it is the responsibility of the employer to reimburse the employee for the expenses or increase the worker’s pay. That said, in the state of Ohio reimbursing an employee for business charges is not a requirement.
It is also helpful when employers are clear about expectations regarding times when work should be done and when it is time to break, when appropriate. Some employers find digital time clocks or spreadsheets tracking time to be helpful. These and other tools are ways to keep a record of time worked.
Do you have questions about your wages while you are working from home? Connect with a Columbus employment attorney to learn more. The attorneys at Coffman Legal can help. Call 614-949-1181 for a free and confidential consultation.