The summer season’s kicking into full gear! Summer holidays are fast approaching. So more employees will likely be taking vacations this year as restrictions lift. And to keep your company in compliance with wage and hour laws, your Payroll team must keep track of it all.
From getting checks out on time to making sure there are enough staff available, here’s what needs to be top of mind for your Payroll pros this summer season so you can avoid expensive legal dilemmas.
Keeping cool in these summer season situations
Remind your Payroll team to be on the lookout for three issues that often crop up during the summer season.
1. Paydays and holidays. It’s a common dilemma: Your normal payday happens to fall on an official holiday. Should you pay employees beforehand, or can you pay them afterward? According to a presentation at the 2021 American Payroll Association Virtual Congress Xstream, your only option is to process payroll early. That way, you can pay employees before the holiday. A representative from the Dept. of Labor (DOL) said the Fair Labor Standards Act specifically requires employers to pay workers by their regularly scheduled payday each pay period. Keep in mind: This summer, some state holidays fall on weekends. So they may be officially observed on different days by different states (e.g., Juneteenth).
2. Holidays with FMLA leave. It can be tricky to know how to handle holidays when employees are out on leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Per the DOL, when a holiday falls in a week where the employee’s taking a full week of FMLA leave, the entire week (including the holiday) is counted as FMLA time. However, if the worker’s taking intermittent leave, the holiday isn’t counted as FMLA time. Exception: If the employee was scheduled to work that day and specifically used leave for that day, then it counts.
3. Scheduling. Now that traveling is on the table this summer, more employees will be out of the office (or away from their laptops). Plus, many workers may have a lot of accrued vacation time to use. This means they could be away for longer periods. So it’s key to plan as early as possible to make sure all roles are covered during summer vacation season. Conducting some cross-training on key Payroll tasks will keep things running smoothly when your people take some much-deserved time away.