|Not official use.|
The employer, however, paid the employees for lunch breaks even though the FLSA does not require compensation for meal breaks. The employer wanted to use that compensation to offset any overtime pay they owed to their employees for the donning and doffing. That makes sense, right? The employer paid them too little for overtime, but it paid them too much for meal breaks... let's just balance it out.
How did the Court rule?
Nothing in the FLSA authorizes the type of offsetting DuPont advances here, where an employer seeks to credit compensation that it included in calculating an employee’s regular rate of pay against its overtime liability.Employer loses. This is a plausible reading of the FLSA but it seems to defy common sense. Then again, sometimes I think the FLSA and common sense may be mutually exclusive.
The Court (and the FLSA) did note that certain "extra compensation" can serve as an offset. Specifically, certain "premium rates" paid to employees who work certain shifts.