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Allen M., Esq.
Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 19135
Experience:  Employment/Labor Law Litigation
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I have a barbershop in Indiana, which barbers are paid on

Customer Question

I have a barbershop in Indiana, which barbers are paid on service commission and may increase/decrease based on their performance. They are required to commit to a work schedule so that the shop is able to commit booked appointments to clients. Some barbers feel they should be paid if they are required to be at work when schedule even if they are not cutting hair. I have 2 questions.
QUESTION 1:
Am I required to pay commission based employees at least minimum wage when they are not cutting hair while required to be at work?
If I am, can I require them to do miscellaneous chores while being paid a hourly wage and at the end of the pay period, pay them either earned accumulative commission or hourly wage, whichever is greatest
QUESTION 2
Can I reduce the barber’s service commission rate ~5-10% when they do not comply to rules and service expectations (dress code, hair cutting protocols, following State Regulations for Barbering, etc.) after being warned?
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 12 months ago.

Thank you for trusting your question to JA today. I am a licensed attorney with over a decade of law practice and over 20 years of experience in the legal field. I’m happy to be of assistance.

Question 1: You are only required to ensure that their total pay divided by their total number of hours (40 or less) is at least minimum wage. You don't have to ensure that each hour itself they earn minimum wage, so they could earn $0 for some of their worked hours, as long as their overall pay makes up for it later on. Ultimately, the total pay though must be at least minimum wage. You could, however, choose to pay them a minimum wage while they are working hours that they are not cutting hair and require them to do other tasks. That's actually very common and there is certainly nothing wrong with that.

Question 2: You can't reduce their pay after they have worked for it, unless it is for safety violations. The laws a pretty strict on reducing pay for time already worked and it's so hard to do, it's not worth the effort. Instead, you could reduce their pay for coming hours. So, you see violations and they haven't complied after a warning, you bring them in and say " because of your violations, next pay period's commissions will be reduced by 10%." They can then either choose to work under those circumstances or quit, and forfeit unemployment based on resigning without good cause.

If you have any further questions, please let me know. I invite follow up questions, so use REPLY for those. If you have no further questions then good luck going forward and please do not forget to rate my service with a top-three rating so that I receive credit for working with you today. Please rate me based on my service and not on your satisfaction with the law, which I am not in control of and I am just reporting to you. Also, feel free to request me in the future, if you have questions concerning a different matter

Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 12 months ago.

Hello, I wanted to check in and make sure that there was not any additional information that you required after the response I previously provided to you. If you need further assistance, please use REPLY and ask me for any additional information you may need. If not, take care and have a great day.