The Tennessee Employment Law Letter considers the question of "When is an employee a volunteer?"
The warm weather months bring a host of opportunities for fresh-air charity work, from outdoor cleanup projects to fence painting to tree planting.
While its certainly laudable for you to encourage your employees to roll up their sleeves and participate in those sorts of activities, remember that some of the time spent in those efforts may be compensable work time. (But remember, those concerns apply to nonexempt employees only. Work time — including volunteer time — generally isn't an issue for bona fide exempt employees, whose salaries typically cover all hours worked.)