An internet meme about lawyers mines humor from the frequency with which attorneys answer questions with “It depends.” Truthfully, “it depends” very often is the right answer, as many legal disputes that appear similar may yield vastly differing results depending on any number of (or sometimes just a few) key factual distinctions. A reply of “it depends” reflects the many wrinkles and nuances within areas of the law, and that includes wage-and-hour law. That’s why, if you have questions about whether something is or is not compensable time under the Fair Labor Standards Act, it is wise to seek out knowledgeable answers from an experienced Atlanta wage-and-hour lawyer.
As a case in point, we can compare and contrast two cases regarding the compensability of time spent donning and removal of safety gear.
In the more recent unpaid hours dispute, the workers were a group of rig hands who worked for an oil company in Pennsylvania. As part of its set of safety rules, the employer required its rig hands to put on “flame-retardant coveralls, steel-toed boots, hard hats, safety glasses, gloves, and earplugs.”