Is Standing in Line Compensable?

Source: Maureen Minehan, Employment Alert, Vol. 30 no. 13, June 26, 2013
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Every minute counts when it comes to compensating employees. From “donning and doffing” equipment and gear to turning on computers to answering e-mails from home on a smartphone, small moments in time can add up to expensive liabilities if employees successfully sue for unpaid wages under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Just ask the companies currently fighting lawsuits that allege they violated they violated the FLSA when they did not pay employees for standing in security lines when entering and exiting their facilities. … A recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit is a good example of this kind of case. In Busk v. Integrity Staffing Solutions, Inc., Jesse Busk and Laurie Castro worked as hourly employees at warehouses, filling orders placed by customers. Busk and Castro alleged Integrity violated federal and state labor laws when the company required them to pass through a security clearance at the end of each shift, but did not pay them for that time. Employees waited for up to 25 minutes to be searched; removed their wallets, keys, and belts; and passed through metal detectors. The pair alleged the clearances benefitted Integrity by reducing the potential for theft from the warehouse….