Question: Are salaried employees entitled to be paid time and a half if they work on a holiday? If they take a day or week off can we deduct that pay?

Answer: Salaried exempt employees are entitled to their full weekly salary when they work any hours in the work week. Being paid on a salary basis means an employee regularly receives a predetermined amount of compensation each pay period. The predetermined amount cannot be reduced because of variations in the quality or quantity of the employee’s work. As a general rule, if the exempt employee performs any work during the workweek, he or she must be paid the full salary amount (regardless of the number of days or hours worked).

An employer is not required to pay time and one half when an employee works on a holiday unless company policy provides for holiday premium pay. The employer may make full day deductions from a salaried exempt employee’s pay only in certain circumstances, including:

  • For absences from work for one or more full days for personal reasons other than sickness or disability;
  • For absences of one or more full days due to sickness or disability if the deduction is made in accordance with a bona fide plan, policy, or practice of providing compensation for salary lost due to illness;
  • To offset amounts employees receive as jury or witness fees or temporary military duty pay;
  • For penalties imposed in good faith for violations of significant safety rules;
  • For unpaid disciplinary suspensions of one or more full days imposed in good faith for serious work rule violations;
  • In the employee’s initial or terminal week of employment if the employee does not work the full week; or
  • For unpaid leave taken by the employee under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.

If the employee performs no work in the work week, the employer is not required to pay wages for that week.