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North Carolina Holiday Pay

Posted by Tamara

According to federal and state laws, employees who work more than 40 hours in a week are entitled to overtime. Overtime is usually paid at 1.5 times the usual hourly rate. If those hours are part of a week with a holiday, however, the additional hours may be paid at the employee’s regular rate.

Understand that there are no laws, North Carolina or federal, that require a company to provide employees with paid holidays. Many employers allow 5 to 7 paid holidays a year, according to their individual company policy. These holidays are usually outlined in the company’s employee handbook.

Realize, too, that there are no North Carolina or federal laws that require employers to pay a premium for working on holidays. Employers aren’t required by law to pay a premium for nights or weekends, either. “Holiday pay” simply refers to the money an employee is paid for a holiday where he or she is off from work.

For instance, Fiona’s company considers July 4th a paid holiday. She is off on that day, but works 40 hours the rest of the week. Her paycheck would show 40 ours of regular pay and 8 hours of holiday pay at her usual rate. Though her paycheck shows a total of 48 hours, Fiona did not work the 8 hours of the holiday, so it is not considered overtime. The law allows her employer to pay her the usual rate for those hours.

Chris works 47 hours in a week with a paid holiday. He would earn 8 hours of holiday pay at the usual rate, 40 hours of regular pay and 7 hours of overtime.

Union contracts often require a higher rate for holiday work. Many companies offer a similar increase in wages. If Chris’s company pays time-and-a-half for hours worked on a holiday and Chris worked 30 hours Monday through Wednesday, 10 hours on Thursday, the holiday, and 10 additional hours on Friday, his paycheck would read a bit differently. He would be paid 30 hours at the regular rate, 10 hours at the holiday rate and 10 hours at the overtime rate. In essence, he would earn 20 hours worth of overtime pay.


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