Law360 Guest Column: I Would Walk 500 Miles...But Would I Get Paid For It?

07/19/2011

Are employers required to pay for travel time if employees drive company vehicles to and from work? What if they perform work-related tasks before leaving or after arriving home? Does it make a difference if they are prohibited from using the vehicles for personal errands? Although the Fair Labor Standard Act’s general travel principle is simple — most travel to and from work is not compensable — travel time questions still plague employers. Fortunately, the Fifth Circuit just made the forecast a little clearer for employers.

On June 15, 2011, in Chambers v. Sears Roebuck and Co., No. 10-20360 (5th Cir. June 15, 2011), the Fifth Circuit adopted a Southern District of Texas opinion granting summary judgment for the employer. Chambers is especially important for employers that provide company cars for travel. Nevertheless, aspects of the case have applications to all employers and provide helpful reminders regarding the importance of well-drafted policies and procedures.

Excerpted from Law360, July 19, 2011. To view full article, click here (subcription required).

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