By Amy E. Feldman
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Lady Gaga’s got herself a lawsuit. And like her fashion, it’s ugly.
Lady Gaga’s personal assistant has filed a lawsuit against the singer, claiming she was not paid for 7,168 hours of work — amounting to $393,000, plus damages. Gaga, for her part, is horrified that the claim was filed, because she says the assistant doesn’t realize what a luxury and a privilege traveling the world with her is.
Gaga contests the fact that the assistant worked any overtime, claiming that the assistant job “is a 9-to-5 job that is spaced out throughout the day,” You don’t get a schedule that is like you punch in and you can play f–king Tetris at your desk for four hours and then you punch out at the end of the day. This is — when I need you, you’re available.”
Yeah. So, here’s the thing. Under the law, even if you’re not actually performing tasks you might still be entitled to pay. Under overtime laws, “periods during which an employee is completely relieved from duty and which are long enough to enable him to use the time effectively for his own purposes are not hours worked.” An employee who can’t use her time away from the employer’s premises for her own purposes is working while “on-call”.
Even if that on-call time happens to be on a private jet.