Should I Be Paid for Time Worked From Home?

Scott Nicholas
Vice President

The simple answer is yes!

If you have work that has to be completed outside of your normal shift, the Department understands it must pay you overtime for that time worked. For example: A traffic officer is required to review an arrest packet prior to arriving to court so you can potentially testify on the case, and you are on your RDO. This time does not have to be preapproved, because there is an expectation by the Department and the court to give an accurate account of the reasons for arrest, the probable cause for the arrest and the circumstances for the stop in the first place. No one can expect you to remember cases that may have happened months or even years before the case is heard. The same thing goes for our PD detectives, our patrol officers or anyone who has been subpoenaed to court. Track the hours you spend preparing and submit them to payroll for payment.

Remember that answering the phone for Department business, writing emails or even reading emails are justifiable reasons to submit for the overtime worked. I want to emphasize that this is work that cannot be completed during normal work hours but is expected to be completed. During contract negotiations, the Department spokesman said officers could face discipline if they are directed not to complete work outside their normal shift, but then do it anyway and then submit for overtime. To be clear, if you are told not to answer your phone, read Department emails or complete any other assignments on your time off, you must follow that directive. Shut your phone off and enjoy your weekend! 

We understand that some officers may feel uncomfortable submitting for this overtime compensation, but we urge you to get into the habit of requesting compensation for your time. No one should work for free. If you have a chain of command that takes care of their people, and you choose not to submit the extra time … we get it. It’s really up to the individual officer, but we just want you to know it’s OK to ask. 

Thank you for your membership.