Labour Law Over Time
Labour Attorney Cape Town
What is Labour law Over Time?
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All overtime is voluntary and may only be worked by agreement between employer and employee. Maximum permissible overtime is 3 hours on anyone day or 10 hours in any 1 week. Remuneration must be at 1, 5 times the normal wage rate except for Sunday work and work on public holidays, which must be remunerated at twice the normal wage rate. Time off, calculated on the same formula, may be granted instead of payment, but only by agreement with the employee.
Employees who earn in excess of the present threshold amount are not subject to the provisions of section 10 (overtime) of The Basic Conditions of Employment Act. This means that such employees cannot demand to be paid for overtime worked, nor can they demand to be granted paid time off in view of payment.
However, contrary to popular belief, the employer also cannot force such employees to work overtime and cannot demand that they work overtime without compensation. All forced labour is prohibited in terms of section 48 of the BCEA, and should the employer require such employees to work overtime then the hours to be worked and the basis of compensation must be negotiated with the employee. Should the employer refuse to compensate for overtime worked in the case of an "over the threshold" employee, then the employee is entitled to refuse to work the overtime.
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If overtime is needed, workers must agree to do it and they may not work for more than three hours overtime a day or ten hours overtime a week.
Overtime must be paid at 1.5 times the workers' normal pay or, by agreement, get paid time off.
More flexibility of working time can be negotiated if there is a collective agreement with a registered trade union. For example, this can allow more flexible hours for working mothers and migrant workers.
Compressed work week: You may agree to work up to 12 hours in a day and work fewer days in a week. This can help working mothers and migrant workers by having a longer weekend.
Averaging: A collective agreement may permit the hours of work to be averaged over a period of up to four months. A worker who is bound by such an agreement cannot work more than an average of 45 ordinary hours a week and an average of five hours of overtime a week over the agreed period. A collective agreement for averaging has to be re-negotiated each year.