Travel Time for Non-Exempt Employees - Different Rate??


Software company, less than 50 employees, located in California.

We've been reviewing job descriptions and have a number of "exempt" employees changing to "non-exempt" employees. With that, the policy (BELOW) was issued. I believe the policy is generally correct - but can management implement a different rate of pay for "travel time" for these folks?

Affected employees often travel for work. So for example, normal work week varies (a single employee may work different shifts during a given week like 5:30 to 2:30PM, 7:00AM to 4:00PM, 8-5PM, 8:30Am to 5:30AM.)  May travel on the morning, nights or weekends to clients and spend multiple days out of town. travel is part of the position and not voluntary.

Example as submitted to me by an employee: Work week Sunday thru Saturday. Employee works Mon-Fri 40 hours;  Travel on Saturday for work on following Monday (say 4PM flight arriving 7Pm, then travel to hotel). No work performed.(or if you can,2nd scenario what is the difference if some work is performed?)  Based on the below she would be paid not "overtime" for extra hours but "travel time" at a different weighted rate for those hours falling outside the normal "schedule" (which varies as mentioned above). Then Sunday, assuming she didn't do any work, she wouldn't be paid at all because in theory she's free to spend her time how she pleases (although kinda hard to do laundry and clean the house from out of state???)

Can anybody help me out with this?

 TRAVEL TIME PAY POLICY for NONEXEMPT EMPLOYEES Time spent traveling to conferences, seminars, training, or client sites shall be compensated as required by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) for nonexempt employees. For required travel when the employee must spend the night away from home, the FLSA requires all time spent traveling during the employee's normal working hours, even on regular days off, (excluding regular meal periods) to be compensated. No additional pay is required for non-working time once they reach their destination. For required travel that does not require an overnight stay, the FLSA requires that all travel time (excluding meal periods, and their usual commute) to be compensated. XXX has chosen to institute an alternative rate of pay for travel time. The rate will be $10.00 per hour.

When an employee is required to report to a work site other than their regular site, and goes directly to that site without first going to the regular site, XXXX will pay the employee travel time for any time in excess of the employee's normal commute time to and from their regular site.

 If travel time in either direction or travel time and work time exceeds eight hours in a workday, the employee will receive travel pay at one and one-half times the weighted average of his/her regular pay rate and the travel time rate. Employees must also take their required meal and rest breaks while traveling as outlined in the Employee Handbook.

Employees will be required to submit a detailed timesheet for all travel time. It is important that the timesheet accurately reflects the record of their time worked when traveling to make sure overtime pay is calculated properly. ?

Example of Travel Time Pay Calculation for Nonexempt Personnel

XXXX has established a “Travel Time” pay rate of $10.00 per hour.

To calculate the Travel Time Pay see the following example:

For example, let’s assume you work an 8 hour day and your travel time begins at 6:00 AM and ends at 8:30 PM, your travel time total would be 6 hours (14 hours minus 30 minutes for lunch, minus 8 hours of work time).

Calculating overtime pay: Using the example above if your regular rate of pay is $20/hour; your overtime pay rate is as follows:

8 hours at $20/hour = $160.00 6 hours at $10/hour = $ 60.00 14 hours $220.00 Total

$220 divided by 14 hours = $15.72 $15.72 now becomes your “regular rate of pay” for that day. 50% of $15.72 = $7.86 (this becomes your overtime premium)

Your pay for the day would then be:

8 hours at $20/hour = $160.00 6 hours at $10/hour = $ 60.00 6 hours at $7.86/hour =$ 47.16 (this is your overtime premium) Total pay for the day = $267.16

Note: overtime pay calculations relating to travel are very complex, therefore please notify payroll in advance of any nonexempt travel time situation so that they can assure the proper payment of employees.

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