My field office has been one of the hardest hit field offices in the country in terms of work load. We have fallen way behind because we don’t have enough agents to complete all the work that comes in. We’re generally known as a busy office, but things have gotten so out of hand that we aren’t expecting to be caught up until 2016, possibly even 2017.

We’ve had several agents from different areas come in for three weeks at a time to try and support our team and get things more manageable. While it helps, it’s still not enough.

One of the perks of working for the federal government, or at least my position within the government, is that I never have to work more than 40 hours a week. While some of my friends in different industries might make more money than me in a calendar year, I always remind them that my hourly rate is not far off from theirs since they frequently show up to work early, stay late, and even go in to the office on the weekends.

Sixty hour work weeks have never been a part of my life. 

Thank goodness.

Yesterday, my boss sent out an email, letting me and a few colleagues know that we are authorized to work up to ten hours of overtime per week for the foreseeable future.

It is completely optional, and there is no expectation from management that we must take advantage of this program.

I get paid 1.5 times my hourly rate for overtime.

Assuming this stays an option the rest of the year, I could gross an extra $30,000 this year.

Which virtually replaces the income we forfeited when we decided Girl Ninja should quit teaching and be a stay at home mom.

Let me get this straight. Girl Ninja can quit working the 40+ hours per week she was putting in as a Kindergarten teacher, I can pick up an extra 10 hours per week, and it’s like nothing changed in regards to our income?


While I legitimately enjoy the work life balance my job provides, I’m definitely willing to give up a little more of my free time if it means we can provide a nice financial buffer for us this year.

How many hours a week do you put it in at work? Do you get paid overtime for extra hours? If your supervisor offered you 10 hours of voluntary overtime right now would you take advantage?


27 thoughts on “Overtime.”

  1. I’m in the military so there is no such thing as overtime. I no longer keep track for the motto is you stay until the work is done…for Uncle Sam doesn’t care if your family is waiting on you. I think its great you are offered these extra hours. If I was in your position I would decided how much extra time I want to work and what I plan to do with it to make sure your time doesn’t go to waste. Good luck.

  2. Nice! That’s an awesome deal! I definitely do not get overtime… I’m thankful to be on salary and have paid vacation and sick time, but, I don’t get paid for any night or weekend work. Sounds like you’re got a fabulous situation on your hands here–enjoy it!

  3. I work 40 hours. Overtime is pretty much not an option unless things go really really bad. My hours are also very flexible so I can shift them around to go to the doctor or pick up my kids at day care early/late if needed.

  4. I used to get overtime but it was banned about 18 months ago and I miss it. I would only get 2 or 3 hours per week but I used all of the overtime for extra debt payments and not getting that extra $40 or $60 a week has really slowed my repayment progress.

    I would take the overtime because I really need it but if you can afford to skip it and spend time with your family instead then you should do that. Money isn’t everything once you are out of debt.

  5. I get paid hourly and can pretty much set my own hours, so sort of like overtime? Though, I very much stick to 35-40 hour weeks. There’s only so much time in life, and I’d rather use it for my own interests when I can.

  6. We work 240 hours over a 6 week period. We also work nights, weekends, and holidays. Once we exceed 40 hours in a work week, we can get overtime also at 1.5 times our hourly rate.

    I used to work a lot when I was younger, but now with kids I work less.

  7. I have the option to get paid at straight-time for every extra hour worked. I typically choose not to though as the mom of two young children. Though in my industry, such a policy is considered pretty generous compared to most. In the same industry, Mr. Maroon only gets paid overtime after he exceeds 40 hours of billable work. Given the demands of managerial tasks, meeting those requirements would generally mean lots of extra hours. Personally, I think it’s a horrible policy. We value our family time so generally have no interest in working overtime.

  8. I work a minimum of 84 hours a week. No over time and when I am not working I’m on call. I guess I should call it a lifestyle instead of a job. One day I will look for a job with a more normal schedule.

  9. I’m a government employee and I generally work 45+ hours a week. They’ve been trying to cut our overtime back for the last few years so we used to work 50+. We can’t justify ten hour shifts every day, but there are those days when we’ve been there for fourteen.

  10. In my current job I get paid overtime for anything above and beyond 40 hours. We generally are required to work at least 2 weekend days in a month which is a guaranteed additional 16 hours (those days are capped at 8 for the time being) and can work up to 2 additional hours every day, but on an as need basis. Right now work is a little slow, so I’ve only been working the 40 (plus those weekends) but once the weather get nicer, work is going to pick right back up and I could be working upwards of 66 hours in some weeks (sometimes we have to work both weekend days depending on the workload, the most days straight I’ve ever worked is 19 days straight, those were nice paychecks but definitely put a cramp in my personal life)

    Typically though, in my line of work, everyone is salary and just has to stay as long as they need to until the work is done. My last company expected 9-10 hour work days but I was only allowed to bill 8 hours. I got the side eye when I’d leave the office at 4 (after my 8 hours I was being paid for were up) while everyone else was still ‘working’. But, mind you, I wasn’t skipping out on my work, I just worked a lot more efficiently (and could type faster) than all the oldies that I used to work with.

  11. Overtime is like an on-again, off-again relationship where I work. Whether it’s approved or not completely depends on why I need to work it, and if their’s budget for it.

    Right now, there’s approval (wahoo!) and I’m working on average 5-10 additional hours a week at 1.5x.

  12. The Fair Labor Standards Act classifies employees as non-exempt or exempt (that is, from overtime pay, usually after 40 hours per week, and some other allowances). If you’re exempt, you can’t be paid overtime. If you’re non-exempt, overtime applies whether you’re hourly or salaried. When I was still working, all my jobs were exempt. That didn’t mean there weren’t times I had to put in more than 40 hours a week; I just wasn’t paid for it and it was expected as part of “professional” (i.e., unpaid slave) behavior.

  13. I guess you don’t mind spending even less time with Baby ninja. Instead of working so much overtime, why doesn’t Girl Ninja get a job(at least a part-time job)? Even if most of her pay goes to daycare, you’ll at least be able to spend more time with baby ninja.

      • With your OT, and if Girl Ninja worked, you could reach financial independence a lot sooner. Also, the longer she’s out of the workforce, the harder it will be for her to get back in once baby(ies) Ninja(s) is/are in school.

        • Yeah but at what cost. Do you have three jobs? If so, why not get a fourth or a fifth. At some point one has to decide where the balance is between work and life. We’ve found that balance with girl ninja staying home and raising up our son (occasionally substitute teaching when she feels like she wants to)

          It’s easy to tell other people what they should do. But we have a great balance between income and freedom right now. Putting baby ninja in childcare for 9 hours each day is not something we desire.

          • Ninja Girl just wants to be lazy. I mean, what does she do when baby ninja is sleeping? I’m sure baby ninja takes many naps throughout the day. Ninja Girl can work a part-time job, and do day care for 4hrs. Plus you work from home, so does she really need to be home all day?

            Actually I work two jobs(a full & an a part-time) on weekdays(12hrs days), a third(12hrs Sat & 12hrs Sun) on the weekends. I average about 84hrs/week. I would get a forth job, but I have to sleep sometime.

            • How about because we want to raise our kid instead of paying someone else to do it. I wouldn’t expect you to understand, but that doesn’t mean the decision our family has made is wrong, bad, or less noble.

              And I laugh at your rude comment that she is lazy.

              Goodbye troll.

  14. Somewhere between 50-75 typically, on call 24-7, and paid a flat salary regardless. But hey, that’s life in the church!

  15. As a salaried professional there is no overtime for me. And there are times that I work plenty of hours above and beyond the standard 40 hour work week.

    From October through December I was working like 80-90 hours a week. Yes that meant I was working most weekends.

    If it were not for the bonus and pay increase I would had been pretty pissed, and was prepared to say something.

    But the extra pay I got at least compensated me at my equivalent hourly rate based on my salary divided by 2080 (work hours per year based on 40 hour work week).

    My goal is to try to find some balance and take advantage of some downtime when we are not nearly as busy. But not sure how successful I am going to be.

    If I were in your shoes and was guaranteed the extra pay and my wife wasn’t working. I would for sure take advantage of the extra 10 hours a week for 1.5X pay rate. Or in your case an extra $30K. That is like picking up a side hustle.


  16. I am an executive level position with a salary for pay. Before I had my kid, I would work whatever hours were needed. Now that I have a child, I make a rule that I will only work 45 hours in the office. I end up closer to 50 when you count time at home, but I have to draw the line somewhere. At this point, chasing the salary/title is not as important to me as spending time with my child.

  17. I’m on a salary and don’t get paid overtime. Before I had my baby I was happy coming in early and staying a bit later when there was lots of work on but now I look forward to leaving right on time and getting home to spend time with my son before his bedtime.

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