3504 Compensation for Travel Time and On-Call Time

Responsible Official: 
Vice President for Human Resources and Administration
Responsible Office: 
Human Resources Compensation Planning
Effective Date: 
September 9, 2014
Revision Date: 
September 9, 2014


This policy affects all and only nonexempt employees.

Policy Statement

This policy is adopted to comply with the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and the Connecticut wage and hour regulations pertaining to travel time and on-call time.


Exempt Employees: Exempt employees (which include most Managerial and Professional employees– M&Ps) are exempt from (not subject to) the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

Nonexempt Employees: Nonexempt employees (which include Clerical & Technical (C&T), Service & Maintenance (S&M), Yale Police, Yale Security employees and a small number of M&Ps) are not exempt from (and therefore subject to) FLSA standards. Under the FLSA, these employees must be paid for travel time, on-call time and one-and-a-half-times regular pay for overtime work.

Overtime-eligible Managerial and Professional Employees (M&P OTE): M&Ps who are not exempt from the FLSA are referred to as M&P OTE.

Policy Sections

3504.1 Travel Time

These regulations require the compensation of nonexempt employees for travel time as follows:

  • Travel time is time during which an employee is required to travel for purposes related to his/her Yale employment.  This does not include time spent traveling from home to the usual place of employment or returning home (“standard commute”).
  • All required travel time in addition to the “standard commute” that occurs on a scheduled work day is considered compensable working time if that travel occurs during scheduled work hours.  Travel time in addition to the “standard commute” that takes place on a day the employee is not normally scheduled to work, such as a weekend day or holiday, is also compensable working time.  Travel time that occurs on a scheduled work day but outside scheduled work hours is not compensable working time. 
  • Compensable working time is paid time.  Travel time that is considered compensable working time is paid at the employee’s regular hourly rate, and is also overtime-eligible; when the combination of hours worked and compensable travel time in a week exceeds the standard full-time schedule (37.5 or 40 hours, based on the position’s standard work schedule), any hours over 37.5 or 40 are paid at one-and-a-half times the regular rate. 

3504.2 On-Call Time

Hours worked include all time during which nonexempt employees are required by an employer to be on the employer’s premises, or to be on duty at a prescribed workplace. This time is typically compensable time.

  • An employee who is required to remain on call on the employer’s premises, or so close that he/she cannot use the time effectively for his or her own purposes, is working while on call and must be compensated.
  • An employee who is not required to remain on the employer’s premises, but is merely required to leave word where he/she may be reached is not working while on call.

Whether the hours spent on-call are considered hours worked is a question of fact to be decided on a case-by case-basis.  Circumstances that generally indicate on-call time being work time include:

  • The employee is required to stay home to receive calls.
  • The employee is required to remain close to his or her work location to improve response time.
  • The employee is on call 24/7 or certain hours of the week without backup relief.
  • The on-call obligation and/or the calls received significantly limit the employee’s use of time for personal purposes.

Based on these guidelines, if it is determined that the on-call time constitutes work time, nonexempt employees must be paid for on-call time in accordance with the standard rates for regular and overtime pay.

Additionally, even when on-call time is not considered work time requiring compensation, any time during which an employee actually performs work in responding to a call is considered work time and must be compensated.