The COVID-19 pandemic, while still ongoing, has already changed the way many businesses had operated before, now with employees working from home or not able to risk coming to the office at all. 

And when the U.S. Congress turned several relief bills into law, businesses and employees had to adapt to those as well. 

One important topic is hours worked by employees. While some businesses had to shut down, those deemed essential remained open. 

In both situations, employers faced questions about pay, such as how much should hourly workers be paid if they worked a partial week and then were forced home by the virus, or how long can a shift be during these times?

The Fair Labor Standards Act says hourly workers are entitled to compensation for the hours they worked that week, while a salaried employee would be entitled to their full weekly pay. And according to the FLSA, as long as the employee is older than 16, there are no limits on how long they can work (though they must be compensated properly). 

Lawmakers are still working on solutions around employment. For example, Congress enabled the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program to allocated billions to employers to help pay these wages while the business is under duress from COVID-19. 

At Terrazas Henkel P.C., our experienced attorneys are tuned in to the legal questions swirling around the pandemic. And with equal attention to federal and Montana state law, our team can help employers and employees understand what to do, as well as when their rights or those of others are being violated. 

Give us a call at 406-541-2550 to set up an appointment and ask questions – we’re all in this together!