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I was wondering if an employer can require a employee to…

I was wondering if...

I was wondering if an employer can require a employee to read a book before they give out a raise.

Lawyer's Assistant: Was this discussed with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?

So I am a managr manager and my boss is saying one of my people needs to read a book before he gives out a raise

Lawyer's Assistant: Is the workplace "at will" or union? Is the job hourly or salaried?

They have not specified that it be on or off the clock but it would be hard to do it on the clock it is at will, hourly employee

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I dont think so

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Answered in 5 minutes by:
6/8/2018
Patrick, Esq.
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,574
Experience: Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
It is for an hourly employee
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
they want my guys to read a book before a raise is given out. But they won't pay for the hours at home, and it is hard to get that done during work. They do spend a lot of time in trucks driving, but I am not sure if that is a legit enough way to get this done

Thank you.

From a purely technical legal standpoint, if the book is "required" by the employer then time spent reading it would be compensable work time. That said, one must give consideration to whether this is an issue worth fighting. It is necessary to "pick one's battles" in the workplace and fighting over 3-4 hours pay at the expense of ruining the employment relationship and prospects of future advancement within the company honestly would seem short sighted to me.

The essentials of most books can be "skimmed" in an hour or so. If it were me, I'd do that rather than turn this into a legal issue.

I hope this helps. If there is anything else I can do for you, just let me know. It's my pleasure.

* Disclaimer *

Just Answer is a venue for informational and educational purposes only. No attorney-client relationship is formed by these communications, and the information provided is not legal advice.

Patrick, Esq.
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,574
Experience: Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
That is helpful and kind of along the lines of what I was thinking. Like why fight it when every dollar raise you get is worth over $2,000 over the course of a year. I would not say it is required reading, you could not read, but then getting raises might be difficult.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
I do not think it states anywhere in our employee handbook that in order to get pay raises you must read a book from a reading list. Do you think that should be included in our handbook and if someone has been hired before that was added would they be grandfathered in?

Handbooks do not create enforceable legal obligations. They are merely guidelines. From the employer's standpoint, they might want to "recommend" certain reading, but formally "requiring" it would probably be a bad idea as it creates a potential legal liability since such time is likely compensable work time.

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