Telecommuting: Employment Law Legal Risks

/ 02/02/2011

More workers than ever now telecommute.  Telecommuting can significantly reduce an employer’s overhead expenses, but telecommuting can also lead to increased employment law legal risks for an employer. 

One potential litigation pitfall concerns overtime compensation for employees who are not exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act.  These employees may seek overtime compensation for hours worked while away from the office.  To combat this, an employer should establish guidelines for when an employee should (and should not) respond to emails and telephone calls and should ensure that an employee does not work overtime without a supervisor’s prior approval.

Another employment law concern centers on the protection of trade secrets and confidential company information.  Protecting sensitive company data may be more difficult when employees telecommute since telecommuting employees may attempt to store files containing confidential company information on personal devices.  To minimize the risk of disclosure or theft by an employee, an employer should restrict access to certain information and should require all work to be done on an employer-owned laptop or through a direct connection to the employer’s computer network. 

To speak to a Dallas, Texas employment law attorney about effective workplace policies regarding telecommuting and trade secret protection, contact the Dallas employment lawyers at Clouse Dunn Khoshbin LLP at [email protected]


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Clouse Dunn
Khoshbin LLP

214.220.3833 ( fax)
[email protected]