From A to Arbitration

Episode 14: Defenses Against Unauthorized Overtime

Jason Atchley returns to discuss unauthorized overtime and discipline arising from it. He discusses what a carrier should do when faced with a workload over 8 hours, and highlights the importance of filling out a 3996, as well as leaving decision-making in management’s hands. He mentions that management should be filling out PS Form 1017, “Unauthorized Overtime Report” when overtime is not approved. 

M-00464: Local management can properly request letter carrier employees to estimate their workload to the best of their ability. When the employees request overtime or auxiliary assistance, the information obtained by the carrier estimation is not intended to be used to discipline carriers or to settle work standards. 

They highlight specific M-39 provisions, including 134.2, which prohibits management from using covert surveillance tactics, and M-00464, which states that projections cannot be used as the sole basis for discipline.

Non-specific references in this episode:

Arbitrator Wolowitz: “We must conclude that management failed to give Mr. Alexander clear instructions as to what to do when he could not complete his assigned delivery within eight hours. Since he thought those were his instructions, he brought the mail back, he did the best to follow his instructions as he understood them.” The removal was rescinded and expunged. 

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