Employment Law Questions? Ask an Employment Lawyer.
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Do you know why you are being treated differently than others?
What I have been told is that it is to make up for the part of my shift that I did not work. When I took this position, I gave up 3 personal days a year, a benefit that hourly employees recieve, but I was told that if I needed to miss a couple of hours here and there that it was not a problem. I made sure that this was not an issue because I have to younger children at home, one of which has just recently been diagnosed with a health issue that requires some more time from my spouse and I. My spouse works for the same employer, in a different department, and is also salary. In the 10 years she has been there, they have NEVER taken away vacation as they have done so with me.
From the facts that you describe, you are exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act and are not entitled to overtime.
The law does not require an employer to provide paid vacation, sick, or personal time.
However, the law doesn't require you to work a full week in order for you to receive your salary. In other words, if you work 4.5 days, your employer is supposed to pay you as if you worked 5. If your employer doesn't, then, yes, it risks losing your exempt status and then has to pay you OT when you work over 40 hours a week.
If you wish to pursue this further, you can file a complaint/inquiry with your local wage and hour division office of the U.S. Department of Labor which can be found here: http://www.dol.gov/whd/america2.htm#Nebraska
Good luck and best wishes for better days ahead. I hope that you find this information to be helpful and this answer to be ACCEPTable!
So, they are able to widdle away at my vacation, a benefit they do provide, when they do not take anyone else's vacation away in the same circumstance? And I am supposed to find this to be okay, fair, and I guess...legal?
Those are really good observations which is why I earlier asked why you are being treated differently than the others (to see if there was some type of illegal bias).
That is also why I gave you to the information of the proper government agency to file an inquiry/complaint about your employer's current practice.
So, there really isn't any kind of answer for me here and now...and I will need to pursue this on a more local level, and with more direct contact? Sorry for the long inquiry into all of this, but I just want to make sure I have all my ducks in a row and understand that there really isn't an answer here to my question, before clicking on the accept answer button.
Well, you can sue your employer in small claims court for whatever money you believe is owed you. I don't know how comfortable you are with that close of hand-to-hand combat with your employer, especially with your spouse also working there.
A complaint with your local office of the U.S. Department of Labor, you may find, is more effective. They are the ones who do the heavy lifting and will be the ones reviewing your employer's practices and ensuring that the federal wage laws are being complied with.