Health Care Employee Overtime Pay
Special rules apply regarding overtime pay for hospital employees and employees in special care jobs. A partial overtime exemption may be used by employers at hospitals and residential care facilities. Under the rule, overtime may be calculated on a bi-weekly basis, or at 80 hours every two weeks, rather than on an individual work-week basis, or 40 hours each week. However, a mutual agreement must be reached beforehand for this type of payment to be permitted under federal law. In addition, common problems include hospitals’ failure to pay employees for work performed during automatic meal breaks and failing to pay employees for “sleep periods” of shifts of less than 24 hours. When determining an employee’s overtime pay, all work time must be counted, including work not specifically requested but “suffered or permitted” by the employer.