Employer CANNOT force you to work overtime; exceptions

What is the general rule regarding overtime work? The general rule remains that no employee may be compelled to render overtime work against his will. Otherwise put, employees have the right to refuse when their employers ask or force them to do overtime work.

Is there an exception? Yes, there is. When can an employee be compelled to render overtime work?[1] When the country is at war or when any other national or local emergency has been declared by the National Assembly or the Chief Executive;

[2] When overtime work is necessary to prevent loss of life or property or in case of imminent danger to public safety due to actual or impending emergency in the locality caused by serious accident, fire, floods, typhoons, earthquake, epidemic or other disasters or calamities;

[3] When there is urgent work to be performed on machines, installations or equipment, or in order to avoid serious loss or damage to the employer or some other causes of similar nature;

[4] When the work is necessary to prevent loss or damage to perishable goods;

[5] When the completion or continuation of work started before the 8th hour is necessary to prevent serious obstruction or prejudice to the business or operations of the employer; and

[6] When overtime work is necessary to avail of favorable weather or environmental conditions where performance or quality of work is dependent thereon.

What if any of the circumstances above is present, may an employee validly refuse to render overtime work? No. May an employer force his employees to do overtime work if any of said situations exist? Yes.

An employee cannot validly refuse to render overtime work if any of the above-mentioned circumstances is present. When an employee refuses to render emergency overtime work under any of the foregoing conditions, he may be dismissed on the ground of insubordination or willful disobedience of the lawful order of the employer.