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Thread: Maximum permissable workhours per week

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    Maximum permissable workhours per week

    Hi All:

    I was wondering if someone can please help me shed some light on the maximum permissable work hours per week for employees earning MORE than the threshold?
    Since they are earning more than the threshold the way I see it is that the BCEA determinations do not apply, but there must be some kind of maximum allowed? The employees' health and safety could suffer if they are working too long for periods on end.
    Some of our employees have some pressure to meet deadlines and have been booking very long weeks, how is this regulated?
    We compensate employees for overtime and the employees agree to working overtime but where do we need to draw the line?

    Your help will be much appreciated.
    Thank you.

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    Gold Member Martinco's Avatar
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    What industry are you in ?
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    Platinum Member sterne.law@gmail.com's Avatar
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    If over the threshhold then the BCEA in terms of hours doe snot count. There is no limit, one presupposes that the employee would vote with their feet.
    Anthony Sterne

    www.acumenholdings.co.za
    DISCLAIMER The above is merely a comment in discussion form and an open public arena. It does not constitute a legal opinion or professional advice in any manner or form.

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    Dave A (25-May-11)

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    this threshold thing is a headache

    Basically what the earning threshold means is that an employee who earns above the threshold cannot demand overtime as they are excluded from certain sections in the BCEA. An employee would be required to work a normal 45 hour week and any overtime would have to be agreed upon by employee and employer, so you will have to negotiate compensation for overtime work. Also do not think that the employer can force you into working overtime as all forced labour is prohibited by sec 48 of BCEA..

    I had the same problem a year ago where my contract stated that I will be required to work overtime (thats the agreeing part) and that I will be compensated in terms of the BCEA.. Now, because I was over the threshold the employer refused to pay overtime. However, because the contract stated that I will be compensated in terms of the BCEA, I then placed it before them that I might not have the statutory right to overtime but the employment contract left a back door open to payment for overtime worked as a contractual right. Lets use a lunch break as an example, over threshold cannot demand a lunch break, but if the employer agrees to it in the form of a contract, the employee would be entitled to it, so check what your contract says.

    PS, they cannot make you work if unless theres an agreement between you two that you will, and if there is, you still have the right to negotiate compensation for it.

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    To answer you question, 3 hours per day, 10 hours per week.

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    Platinum Member sterne.law@gmail.com's Avatar
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    Also note that the threshold was now increased to R172 000 per year.
    Anthony Sterne

    www.acumenholdings.co.za
    DISCLAIMER The above is merely a comment in discussion form and an open public arena. It does not constitute a legal opinion or professional advice in any manner or form.

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    Dave A (02-Jun-11)

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    Diamond Member tec0's Avatar
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    Right now a “steel maker” has basically killed a few employees are not being forced to cut down on their hours. That said, the basic pay is so crappy, the workers cannot cut down because they have no medical and or housing benefit thus the overtime is paying for that. Also there is no recruitment system and the Union reps are driving cars worth over what they can afford… “The union reps was forced out last week by the workers”

    That said people have died there due to many health and safety aspects that was not met. Sadly government seems to skip that part. Bing over worked was also a contributor but again if you have “special” arrangements it seems that 15 hour a day is allowable. So it is also a question of what arrangements was made… How they are made I think is a discussion for another day.

    The fact remains that “arrangements” can and is indeed made that violates the basic health and safety act along with a few other laws. So my basic conclusion is this, if you need them to work longer hours get an “adjustment” from the custodians “it is apparently possible” and then work out the TAX and other such adjustments.
    peace is a state of mind
    Disclaimer: everything written by me can be considered as fictional.

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