There might be times when you need to work overtime. Your employer might have directed you to do that. Most of us do not know the rules guiding overtime, but we still need to know some facts such as; must employers pay overtime for salaried employees? This write-up will address some of these facts and most popular questions relating to overtime in the UK.
What is overtime?
Overtime is the extra time you spent working over and above your office hours. For instance, if the normal working hour is between 9 am to 5 pm (40 hours; Monday – Friday) and you are still in the office covering for someone who is not around or still on the way for their shift or to finish a project; then this period of extra time working is termed as overtime.
Is overtime a lawful duty?
Definitely, Overtime is a lawful duty and most of us do it.
Nevertheless, there are laws guiding overtime as regards how much extra-time you can spend. According to the law, you are expected to work for at most 48 hours per week. If you spent over 48 hours working per week plus the overtime, then, it could be declared unlawful. Although, there are some special situations in which these don’t apply to; if you as an employee sign an agreement with your boss stating that you are comfortable working over 48 hours per week then it is permissible and lawful.
Must overtime be paid?
This doesn’t apply to every firm or organization. Each organization has their own rules regarding pay for extra-time. Endeavor to check your contract or your organization’s policy to find out what applies to you.
Can you be asked to do overtime?
Yes, either paid or unpaid, you can be made to do overtime.
If you are unsure about your organization’s policy and terms of business, endeavor to peruse through your contract. Each organization has their policy and you may have already signed the contract, agreed to the terms therein, to do overtime when the need arises. If you happen to be in that situation, not accepting to do overtime could be seen as misdemeanor or breach of contract.