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DOL Releases Sleep Time Guidance

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DOL Releases Sleep Time Guidance

May 6, 2016

On April 25, the Department of Labor issued new sleep time guidance, including Field Assistance Bulletin 2016-1Questions and Answers, and an updated fact sheet. The documents include examples to demonstrate the proper application of sleep time rules for workers based on their employment circumstances. In the message accompanying the guidance, DOL said:

"Since publication of the Home Care Final Rule, the Department of Labor has led an unprecedented implementation program to engage stakeholders and to develop compliance materials to meet employers’ needs. In this process, the Department has received questions from the public regarding whether and when home care workers must be paid for time they spend sleeping. In response to these questions, the Department has issued new guidance. The guidance describes the broadly-applicable rules governing under what circumstances an employer may exclude sleep time from an employee’s hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and, if exclusion is permissible, how many hours may be excluded. The guidance provides explanations and examples from the domestic service context."