Paid to sleep?

17th January 2014

Paid to sleep?

image (92)

Sleeping on the job has kept employment tribunals busy for years. Employees working night shifts have long argued that even where they’re not actually “on the job” they are still ‘working’ and, so, are still entitled to be paid the National Minimum Wage (‘NMW’).

That’s what happened in Ms Whittlestone’s case. She was a care worker who visited clients in their homes. For sleepover shifts between 11pm and 7am she was paid £40 (so less than the NMW), and was allowed to sleep when she wasn’t needed. There was no evidence that Mr Whittlestone was required to attend to clients during those night shifts.

The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) agreed that she should have been paid the NMW for the whole time spent sleeping over because it was ‘time work’ under the Working Time Regulations. That was regardless of whether her sleep was broken or not.  The EAT held that she was also entitled to be paid the NMW for the time spent travelling between clients’ homes.

For employers in the care sector, in particular, this case should trigger a review of contracts and the payments made for sleepover shifts. It’s a complex legal area, and each case is different, but those employers who get it wrong and don’t pay the NMW when they should could face substantial sanctions and adverse publicity.

Blog Posts

Would you let your child drink two coffees, each containing up to ten sugar cubes, before school every day?

30/08/2018

For any responsible parent, the answer is no - yet, tens of thousands of…

Read More
Upcoming Events

The Great Framlingham Sausage Festival

13/09/2018

Gotelee are proud to announce that we will be sponsoring the famous Great Framlingham…

Read More
News Posts

Civil partnerships extended to heterosexual couples – but do you know the legal implications?

11/10/2018

The news that the Government is to allow heterosexual couples to enter into civil…

Read More

Testimonials

"Approachable, very efficient, always willing to take my calls and update me."

- SH

"We were very pleased to have Jade as our solicitor, the service was excellent and we felt kept in the loop which minimised stress"

- CT

"I have used Tracey Laflin at Gotelee on a number of occasions and in my opinion, she is simply the most efficient conveyancing solicitor I have ever worked with. From the outset, she took the time to understand my specific business requirements and to date, she has exceeded all of my expectations."

- Dale Fiddy - Portobello Developments Ltd

"I don't think this house sale would have pulled together without Jo's determination and expertise. Excellent!"

- MT

"Jade Shelton was absolutely fantastic!! Professional and proactive at all times."

- JH

"This is by far the go-to firm for any issues. You are made to feel valued from the outset and they are so confident in what they do. Wouldn't recommend any other. Thank you Hugh and Max."

- Ros Jones

"Domini was very fast and efficient in carrying out her work for me - she was also very good at explaining things to me"

-

"Prompt, helpful, polite and very professional service"

-

"The ease that we could access and speak to Pat Smith - Thank you"

-

"We found Rachel Dawson outstanding, polite, professional and caring."

-

Please select preferred method of contact

* We will only contact you by telephone if you select this as primary form of contact. All web enquiries will be stored on our website for 30 days.