What is Considered “Off-Duty” Work?

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What Does Your Agency Call “Off-Duty”?

Off-duty, extra-duty, details, overtime, extra jobs, secondary employment… it may be called something different from agency to agency, but it all means the same thing: jobs worked outside of an LEO’s regular on-duty shifts. Off-duty jobs are typically in private security, but occasionally other types of work do come up.

The Many Types of Off-Duty

Agencies may see off-duty and think, “We don’t really do that,” but off-duty jobs come in a few different forms:

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+ Overtime/Patrol Overtime “Overtime” is regular agency overtime. While it is technically not an “off-duty” detail, it is often treated as such when it comes to adhering to policy in total hours worked (off-duty AND on-duty) and the number of hours worked in a given time-period (ie: 16 hours in a 24 hour time period). As a result, many off-duty solutions accommodate regular agency overtime.
+ Grant Work A lot of agencies participate in safety programs supported by the Federal Government, like DUI programs or “Click it or Ticket.” The hours put towards these programs are outside of regular on-duty patrol hours and they must have comprehensive documentation to get reimbursement from the federal government.
+ Secondary Employment While “secondary employment” can be another term for off-duty security details in general, it’s often referred to as any side hustle or second job an officer has, even if it isn’t related to policing. Because officer fatigue is such an important consideration when an officer is on-duty, many agencies require officers to adhere to off-duty policies for any side job - be it a family business, teaching night classes, or working retail.
+ Special Events Many special events, like a marathon, require coordination and cooperation across the city from road closures to hiring EMS or Fire. Large sports games and concerts that need a police presence also count as special events. In some cases, one-off jobs go through the special event process as well.

These job scenarios are performed outside of regular working hours or shifts and need to be scheduled, invoiced and well-documented.