The post will discuss the overtime laws in California, the relationship between salary and overtime, exemptions from overtime, and how an employment lawyer can help. As one of America’s most populous states, California has a rich and complicated system of labor laws. Employers and employees alike must be well-versed in the labor laws to ensure that both are being treated fairly and in accordance with state regulations.
In California, overtime laws can be particularly tricky, but understanding them is essential for any business owner or employee in the state. That’s why we’ve consulted an employment lawyer to explain California’s overtime law in more detail.
From the relationship between salary and overtime to exemptions from overtime laws, you’ll come away with a comprehensive understanding of the rules governing overtime in California. Plus, we’ll show you how an employment lawyer can help navigate the complexities of California’s labor laws.
What is the new overtime law in California?
If you are properly classified as an hourly worker, then you are afforded the protections of California Labor Code Section 510, which says that eight hours worth of labor constitutes a day’s work.
Okay, well, does that mean it means if you work more than eight hours in a day you are supposed to get paid one and a half times your regular rate of pay similarly if you work over 40 hours in a week you are supposed to get paid one and a half times your regular rate of pay for all hours worked over 40 now the statute doesn’t stop there it also says that if you work over 12 hours in a day you’re supposed to get paid double time or two times your regular rate of pay if you work seven days in a row and on that seventh day you work more than eight hours for all hours over eight on
that seventh day you’re supposed to get paid two times your regular rate of pay this is a very powerful statute meant to reward employees for working longer hours if their employer requires them to work those longer hours now this law does not apply to everyone if you are properly classified as a salaried employee under the exempt person is not exempt off then you don’t get overtime but there’s always the question as to whether or not the employer classified you properly and we’re going to cover that in a little bit suffice to say if you are properly classified as an hourly worker you’re supposed to get paid overtime
What is the most common violation with the dot?
The traditional type of overtime violation that people think about is when the employer just refuses to pay overtime. Unfortunately, for those employers who simply refuse the laws with the laws and if your employees work more than eight hours in a day or more than 14 hours in a week, you have to pay overtime off the clock.
very common types of overtime violations, this is where the employees ask to show up 15 minutes early to work every day but not clock in until their shift starts, or when they’re asked to clock out at the end of this shift and just keep working but not record the time that they’re working, or when an employee is asked to work through their lunch break. Not only are there a host of other violations associated with that, but if the employee works through their 30-minute lunch break in it works an eight-hour shift, that data of eight and a half hours of work half an hour is attributed to overtime pay piece rate cases. These are very common. This is where the employee doesn’t get paid by the hour but gets paid per unit accomplished.
It’s very common in the construction industry and the auto repair industry if you have a few jobs on a piece rate and you feel like your compensation structures Funky call lawyers: those are very complicated cases and potentially very economically viable meal breaks. We talked about that a second ago. It’s so common in California on-call cases. This is where the employee is expected to be on call during off-duty hours. Well, sometimes overtime laws apply to that, so you want to make sure you contact the lawyer about those those are complicated travel time cases. I’m not talking about the trucking industry, but if you’re an employee, you work for a typical company, and they ask you to do something in the middle of your shift.
I’m not talking about commuting to and from work; those are exempt, but if you’re asked to drive somewhere in the middle of your shift, that is hours worked, and if they do not properly compensate you for your overtime hours for that travel time, that could be a violation. You should contact work and by far the most common type of overtime violation or miss classification cases we’re going to talk about that right now.
What is another word for misclassification?
Everybody knows if you get paid a salary, you don’t get overtime, but we get phone calls all the time from people who get paid a salary, but they’re not managers, they’re just every-day employees, and they’re working a lot of extra hours, and they’re asking us, “Hey, should I get paid by the hour?” Well, the answer is it depends. This is commonly called a misclassification issue, so to make this as simple as I possibly can, the difference between a salaried employee and an hourly employee is not decided by the employer; it’s decided by the law, and the law decides that based on the employee’s job duties, not based on titles or anything like that, but based on what they do on a daily basis, so let’s look at this a little bit more.
A salaried employee is somebody who exercises significant discretion; they have independent business judgment; they have to get paid more than two times the state minimum wage, and an exemption must apply to them. Without getting into it, there are six exemptions, and they’re outlined in the wage orders.
They’re very complicated, so if you feel like you should be paid an hour on an hourly basis and you’re a salaried employee, you need to call a lawyer to see if one of these exemptions actually applies to you. Let’s make it a salaried employee you need to call a lawyer to see if one of these exemptions actually applies to you but let’s let’s make it a little bit easier to understand. Generally speaking, a salaried employee is somebody who exercises significant discretion. They decide what to do, they tell people what to do, they can hire and fire, they can decide people’s wages, and they can get performance evaluations. This is somebody who has significant discretion. An hourly employee is generally somebody who kind of follows a script. Think of a production-level employee on an assembly line, and those hourly employees don’t have discretion; they don’t have the ability to tell people what to do. Now here’s something that kind of throws a twist.
let’s say you’re a manager but you only spend twenty percent of your time doing managerial type duties the other 80% of your you’re working the cash register you’re waiting a table you’re doing a basic assembly line type job well likely even though you’re called a manager you should get paid by the hour because if you’re spending more than 50 percent of your time doing non-exempt hourly work you should get paid overtime and that’s what the law says so again this is pretty complicated but leave it at this if you’re getting paid a salary and you feel like you’re working a lot of extra hours and you’re not a big bigwig at the company you might want to call lawyer to find out if you’ve been misclassified because if you are working a lot of hours you might be able to a substantial amount of unpaid overtime
What is the name of monetary damages?
if you have an unpaid overtime case what kind of remedies are available to you well California Labor Code section 1194 says that you can get for specific types of remedies first and foremost is your unpaid overtime that should be obvious by now secondly you can get interest on the amount of money that you should have been paid when it should have been paid to you third you can get the cost of the loss of pay various court fees or your lawyer will pay for you various court fees and deposition costs to pursue your case finally you can get attorney fees this is very important because it is often larger than the unpaid overtime claim itself and that way it’s a very significant hammer to get these defendants into settlement discussions early on but what’s really important when talking about collecting money in an unpaid overtime claim is this statute of limitations depending on
how good your lawyer is it’s a three or four year statute of limitations so this is super important and without getting into any detail let me say this if you just quit or if you were just fired from your job you don’t want to wait even a couple weeks to contact a lawyer you want to contact your ear right away and file your case or talk to the lawyer what you should do because if you wait even a couple months the statute of limitations on the back end might erode away your damages day by day very slowly so it’s very important that if you have an unpaid overtime claim where you think you have an unpaid overtime claim or if you think you are misclassified and you were working a lot of hours contact an employment lawyer for a consultation to figure out whether or not you should pursue it or whether or not it’s something the Department of Labor can handle the labor board or whether it’s something you should just let go it’s really important to get that consultation done sooner rather than later.