One of the hot issues under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is whether employers should be required to pay employees for time spent waiting in security lines to access their job site. Employees argue that such time is required as part of their jobs, and thus should be paid. Employers argue that such time is not “work” and is not compensable. A case involving contract employees at one of Amazon.com’s warehouses in Nevada was accepted by the Supreme Court this week, setting up a significant decision which could impact wage and hour practices around the country.
In the Amazon case, workers alleged they had to spend nearly 30 unpaid minutes each day waiting in line to clear security checks before and after their shifts. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the case could move forward, which set up a conflict with other court decisions. An article about the case can be found here. This case will have a significant impact on Texas, where many contractors at plants and refineries have faced similar lawsuits. A decision from the Supreme Court should be expected in the summer of this year.