Being on-call could be classed as time work… but not always

18 April 2019

Are wardens/receptionists who were on call from evening to morning working on "time work” under the National Minimum Wage legislation?


Yes and no, held the EAT in Frudd v Partington Group. With thanks to Daniel Barnett’s employment law bulletin for providing this update.


The Claimants, who worked at a caravan site, were expected to be on-call after their shifts (which finished at between 4.30pm and 8 pm) until 8 am the following morning. The Claimants argued that whilst on-call they were working on "time work" and so entitled to be paid the National Minimum Wage. The sleep-in exception in the Mencap case did not apply because they were not on a sleep-in.


The EAT upheld the Employment Judge's finding that between the end of their shift and 10 pm they were working on time work because their responsibilities included showing round prospective customers and welcoming late arrivals. They were therefore entitled to be paid the NMW for that period.


The Claimants were not, however, required to carry out that work after 10 pm, unless they were called out for an emergency for which they were paid. After 10 pm, they were therefore not working on time work unless called out and were not entitled to be paid whilst merely on-call.


The full judgment Frudd v Partington Group can be read at GOV.UK.