Under the FLSA, an employer is permitted to round recording of employees’ start and stop work times to the nearest, 5, 10 or 15 minutes so long as the rounding method used is neutral to employees as a group over the long haul. The employer need not show that every individual employee comes out with no loss or gain of work time due to the rounding method, nor must rounding result in no gain or loss each pay period. Rounding remains legal even though state law requires one and a half normal pay for overtime work since the rounding practice rewards some employees for more overtime work, some for less, all neutrally. See See’s Candy Stores, Inc. v. Superior Court (2012) 210 Cal.App.4th 889. The district court also properly granted summary judgment on the employee’s claim for one minute of added compensation because the employer failed to compensate him for that time when, contrary to company policy, he logged into an auxiliary computer program before activating the time keeping program. The de minimis doctrine is not an affirmative defense that the employer must allege to invoke. There are three requirements for it to apply: (1) a practical administrative difficulty in recording the additional time, (2) a small aggregate amount of uncompensated time, and (3) irregularity of the additional work. Here, the violation of company policy and scarcity of other similar violations satisfied (1) and (3). The total one minute of uncompensated time satisfied (2).
Under the FLSA, an employer may round work start and stop times to the nearest 15 minutes, if the rounding does not decrease work time considering all workers over an extended period; also, another practice that deprived plaintiff, alone, of one minute of work time was a de minimis violation for which the FLSA provided no remedy.