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Q&A: How Many Hours Can I Assign to a Part-Time Employee?

There’s no limit per se, but there are few factors you might want to consider:

* If the employee was looking for a part-time job when you hired them (and didn’t settle for fewer hours than desired), you may get pushback if you assign more hours than they bargained for on a regular basis.
* Under certain laws, as well as insurance and retirement plans, benefits kick in when an employee hits a certain number of hours per week, regardless of how you classify them. For example, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) considers employees full time at 30 or more hours per week.
* If you regularly assign an employee a full-time schedule while continuing to classify them as “part time”—and full-time employees receive additional benefits, such as paid time off—the employee could argue they’re being treated unfairly or even in a way that amounts to employment discrimination.

This Q&A does not constitute legal advice and does not address state or local law.

Answer from Sergio, SHRM-CP:
Sergio has over a decade of customer service experience including non-profit, food service, and hotel management. He graduated from Portland State University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Management and Leadership. In his free time Sergio loves physical fitness, spending time with family, and travelling.

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