While California does have some of the most beautiful weather throughout the nation, it does have its bad days. When those bad weather days occur, residents may find it difficult to travel to work, or their work may be shut down. This can lead many employees to wonder whether or not they will get paid during these bad weather days. The truth is that it’s complicated.
Non-exempt vs. exempt employees
Employment law specifically categorizes employees into two categories, which are non-exempt employees and exempt employees. Exempt employees are those that are paid a specific minimum salary. Non-exempt employees, on the other hand, are employees that receive an hourly wage. Non-exempt employees are eligible to receive overtime pay for any hours that they work over 40 hours per week.
When it comes to inclement weather, non-exempt employees do not have to be paid if they are unable to work. In the event that non-exempt employees are able to work a partial day but need to leave due to weather shutdowns, they must be paid for the hours that they worked. In states like California, state laws mandate that employees be paid a minimum of a specific set of hours for working a partial day. When it comes to exempt employees, they are to be paid their normal salary regardless of whether or not they could work.
Exempt employees must use accrued leave
When inclement weather shuts down a business, exempt employees may be required to use one of their accrued leave days. These may be referred to as vacation, sick or any other form of paid time off. If the exempt employee does not have any remaining accrued leave days, the business must provide them with one day in advance.
When bad weather strikes, it can be a bit confusing to figure out how and if you’ll be paid for the time. Since the weather is not under the control of the business, most employees will not get paid for being out of work. However, it’s always advisable to speak to an attorney in your state to determine what the laws are regarding pay during bad weather.