Have you ever wondered whether you should be compensated for your travel time to and from work because, well, you’re being forced to travel? A man named Bobby Overton attempted to be compensated by his employer for his travel time, and lost! He claimed that Disney should compensate its employees for the required mile long journey on the shuttle headed to the Happiest Place on Earth.
Of course, the Court was quick to point out that the shuttle was not the only way Disney employees could get to work. For example, some employees arrived in buses, some in trains, some were dropped off by friends and family, and some came in vanpools. The fact that these individuals did not take the shuttle indicated that the shuttle was not required.
The Court distinguished Overton’s case from a claim brought by certain agricultural employees who were forced by their employer to park and group at the Disneyland parking lot, travel in the Disneyland shuttle that the employer paid for, and arrive at the fields where they worked. In this case, the employees were forced to take the shuttle by their employer, were subject to the control of the employer, and thus had to be compensated for their shuttle ride.
Overton’s ingenuous solution of moving the time clock from the main entrance to the shuttle departure area in the Disneyland parking lot did not sit well with the Court. The Court noted that many employees could take advantage of this solution by walking (very slowly) to work instead of taking the shuttle, or having a hearty meal in between punching in and showing up for work. Also, with this solution, Disney would have to redirect employees who took other forms of transportation to the parking lot just so that they could punch in! Obviously, the Court decided not to force Disney to take such drastic measures and instead slapped Overton with the costs of Disney’s appeal.
“If the pink slip doesn’t fit,