California Rules on Employee Overtime, Minimum Wage, and Hour Laws
Labor laws exist to ensure that employees work in a safe environment and are treated fairly by their superiors. Laws regarding wages and hours were put in place by the FLSA to mandate fair treatment by all employers, whether they are small, large, public, or private businesses.
Compared to other states, California has plenty of labor laws to protect workers from exploitation. However, that doesn’t eliminate the need for wage and hour attorneys Newport Beach, as some employers will still try to get around these laws.
Workplaces often rely on their employees’ ignorance of their workers’ rights so that they continue working, not knowing that what their employer is doing is actually illegal. The first step to avoid being taken advantage of is to educate yourself on employment laws in your state. The overtime dispute lawyers Newport Beach of Accident Lawyers Firm have compiled a guide to basic employment laws in the state of California.
California’s minimum wage is much higher than some states, such as Tennessee, where they go by the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour, which adds up to less than $20,000 a year for employees who work a 40-hour workweek.
Starting January 1, 2017, the state of California started to steadily increase the minimum wage in order to provide stronger financial support to hourly workers. It began at $10 an hour for employers with 25 employees or less and $10.50 for employers for more than 25 employees, then increased to $12 an hour for small businesses and $13 for larger businesses on January 1, 2020. As of January 1, 2021, the minimum wage is $13 an hour for companies with 25 or fewer employees and $14 for larger employers.
In 2023, the minimum wage will officially be $15 for all California employees.
While the standard of living is higher in California than it is in Tennessee, many workers’ rights advocates say that a $15 an hour wage is the minimum amount necessary to live a comfortable life.
Tips are the additional amount left by the customer for their server as a reward for a job well done.
Under California law, tips cannot be included as part of your hourly wage. Your manager, in addition to any non-customer facing role, cannot receive a cut of your tips.
Tips left of a credit card are subject to a credit card processing fee. However, you are not responsible for the customer’s decision not to tip in cash. This processing fee may not be deducted from your tips, as it is illegal in California.
In California, employees eligible for overtime must receive 1.5 times their regular rate if they work more than eight hours in a day or 40 hours in a week. After working 12 hours in a single day, California law dictates that employees must receive double their regular hourly rate.
If an employee works for seven days straight, that employee is entitled to time and a half for the first eight hours of work and double time for additional hours worked on the seventh day.
If you have not received additional compensation for any overtime hours worked, you should contact an unpaid overtime lawyer Newport Beach in order to force your employer to follow the law and pay you accordingly.
Lunch Breaks and Rest Breaks
Employees are entitled to a 30-minute meal break after five hours of work, which is unpaid. Exemptions occur when the workday will be completed in six hours or less and both the employer and employee agree to waive the meal break.
An employee cannot work over ten hours in one day without a second 30-minute break, except if the workday is no more than 12 hours. The second meal break can only be waived if the first meal break was taken and not waived.
What to do if You Need Lawyer to Sue an Employer for Unpaid Wages
If you think your employer has violated a California labor law, then you should contact a Newport Beach workplace lawyer. The reason it’s important to hold your employer accountable for their actions is that you probably aren’t the only employee who is being treated unfairly. It’s likely that there are others who are being exploited, and if your employer isn’t held accountable, then they will continue to act this way.
Having a labor attorney on your side will prevent your employer from intimidating you and taking further advantage of you. Accident Lawyers Firm is an unpaid overtime lawyer Newport Beach workers can trust to fight for justice. Contacting one of our attorneys to set up a consultation is the first step in your fight for compensation of unpaid wages.