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How to Handle Daylight Savings Time

October 1, 1999
Related Topics: Wages and Hours, Featured Article
When the first hint of fall arrives, it's time to think about time—daylight saving time.

Under the Uniform Time Act, daylight saving time is observed from the first Sunday in April until the last Sunday in October.

For payroll managers, the ritual of "spring forward, fall back" involves more than resetting clocks, wristwatches and VCRs.

Here's the drill:
When returning to standard time during the last Sunday in October, clocks are moved back one hour at 2 a.m. Shift workers on duty at that time will actually work an extra hour, for a total of nine hours of work. Employees must be paid for all nine hours. They are also entitled to overtime on the basis of all hours worked during the week, including the extra hour worked during the conversion to standard time.

Conversely, the arrival of daylight saving time in April requires clocks to be moved forward one hour at 2 a.m. Shift workers who are on duty at that time and who normally work an eight-hour shift will actually work only seven hours.

An employer, as a matter of policy, may decide to pay the normal eight hours of pay for that shift. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the employer is not required to include the additional hour of pay when calculating an employee’s regular rate for overtime. However, because the extra hour of pay is not compensation for hours actually worked in the work week, no part of that amount may be credited toward overtime compensation that may be due if the employee qualifies for overtime during the rest of the work week.

Source: CCH Incorporated is a leading provider of information and software for human resources, legal, accounting, health care and small business professionals. CCH offers human resource management, payroll, employment, benefits, and worker safety products and publications in print, CD, online and via the Internet. For more information and other updates on the latest HR news, check our Web site at

The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion.

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