What are the Wage and Hour Laws in California?
Whether you’ve just moved to California for a job, or have been working here all your life, as an employee you should be aware of California’s wage and hour laws. This will help you understand your rights and know when your employer isn’t treating you fairly.
We’ve tried to cover all the aspects regarding California’s wage and hour laws that you might have questions about.
Wage and Hour Laws
Wage and hour laws are simply the established essential requirements for salary and working time. It includes aspects such as minimum wage, tips, overtime, lunch and rest breaks, what qualifies as time worked, the time by which you should be paid, and what your employer should pay you for, etc.
Agency That Established California’s Wage and Hour Law
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is a federal wage and hour law. However, different states, cities, and counties are known to have their own wage and hour laws, and so does California. Employers who are subject to multiple laws are required to comply with the law that is most beneficial for their employees.
Minimum Wage in California
On the basis of the size of the employer, California has passed a law for a steady increase to the state minimum wage. In 2019, the smaller employers with up to 25 employees are required to pay a minimum wage of at least $11.00, whereas the larger employers with who have above 25 employees are supposed to pay a minimum wage of $12.00.
In 2020, both these types of employers are required to raise the minimum wage by $1.00 of the current minimum wage. The increase is supposed to continue till 2023 when every employer must pay their employees a minimum wage of $15.00.
Minimum Wage in California for Tipped Employees
Even though the federal FSLA and other state laws allow employers to pay a lower minimum wage to tipped employees, these laws do not apply to California. The law in California requires employers to pay the full minimum wage to tipped employees for each working hour.
Lunch or Rest Break
In California, the workers are entitled to a lunch break of half an hour after five working hours, which is unpaid. With the exception of days when there are only six total working hours or less, and the employee and employer agree to waive the break.
Employees are not supposed to work more than 10 hours per day without another half-hour break, except when the workday is only 12 hours. There’s an option to waive it if the first break wasn’t waived. If the employees agree in writing, an on-duty paid meal is allowed due to such work nature.
Except for the employees who have less than a total of three and a half working hours, employees are permitted to a paid ten-minute rest break every four working hours.
If eligible employees in California work more than 8 hours per day or more than 40 hours in a week, they are entitled to receive overtime. For more than 12 working hours, employees are eligible to receive double time. For working on the 7th day, the employee is eligible for the time worked, and a half for the first eight working hours and double time for extra hours. However, these laws aren’t applicable to every job.
You should be aware of the rights that California has granted you as an employee, and if you feel that these rights are being infringed upon, you should contact an experienced attorney.
If there is ever any confusion regarding what is legal interaction and what may qualify as discrimination, contact Eldessouky Law today at (714) 793-0594 to understand your rights, and hold your employer accountable if they are in violation of state or federal laws.