Updated: Nov 2, 2022
Discussing The Difference In Federal Law And California Labor Laws
The California Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) has set laws on wages, work time, and other employee rights at the federal level. The FLSA covers the following:
Standards for the minimum wage
Labor laws governing employment in interstate commerce
The prohibition of child labor
One problem with just skimming the FLSA is overlooking California laws. Remember, states and county laws and policies can vary from federal regulations. So, we'll discuss FLSA and California labor law in this guide.
Here's what our experienced California Fair Labor Standards Act Attorneys:
Since 2009, the federal minimum wage has remained at $7.25. Meanwhile, California's current minimum wage for companies with 26 or more employees is $15 per hour.
However, many California towns and counties have minimum wage regulations. Some have different rates for particular workers, such as hotel personnel.
Employers are frequently unaware of these laws. If you're not getting paid the minimum wage, consider consulting with a Fair Labor Standards Act Lawyer in Los Angeles.
Employers in California are required to pay employees who work more than 40 hours per week an overtime premium equal to 1.5x the usual wage, just like under the FLSA.
However, California also mandates the following:
Businesses pay 1.5x as an overtime premium to employees who work over 8 hours per day and double time, or twice the standard rate, to those who work over 12 hours per day.
Employers are also required to provide a premium pay of time-and-half the usual rate for the first 8 hours of work and double time for any additional hours worked on the seventh consecutive day of the workweek.
Contact an FLSA lawyer in Los Angeles if you have overtime pay problems. Remember, overtime is one of the most common wages that employers try to skimp on, so you must pay attention to it and exert your rights.
Even though the FLSA does not mandate meal or rest breaks, it does stipulate that small breaks taken throughout the day are considered compensable work hours.
On the other hand, California has stringent meal and rest regulations:
California law requires an unpaid duty-fee meal interval of at least 30 minutes before the employee begins the sixth hour of work when employees work more than 5 hours.
An additional meal break before the employee begins the eleventh hour of work is required when an employee works more than ten hours.
Employers must give employees who work longer than 3.5 hours a paid, duty-free rest break for every 4 hours of work, ideally during the four-hour block.
Employers who don't give employees the necessary meal and rest breaks may pay premium pay valued at one hour at the average rate of pay (instead of the base hourly rate).
In addition, they may be compelled to pay premium compensation for both meals and rest breaks each day.
Rest and meal breaks can be challenging to navigate. Consider talking to your FLSA lawyer in Los Angeles before taking any action.
Flat Sum Bonuses
Knowing the FLSA well, employers know that non-discretionary bonus monies must be included in the regular compensation rate when figuring overtime.
To calculate the overtime premium for a bonus, divide the total compensation by the number of hours worked. The overtime premium is paid at.5 times the regular rate for each overtime hour. This formula is also used in California but not for "flat sum incentives."
Employee classification plays a considerable role in the way employees are paid. It also affects benefits, so much so that employee misclassification in California is grounds to file lawsuits against offending employers.
1. Independent Contractors
The FLSA uses a multi-factor test to determine whether someone is an independent contractor, despite the federal Department of Labor's announcement that it is creating a proposed rule. This test looks at the "economic reality" of the connection.
Contrarily, California has formalized the "ABC" test, which firmly stipulates that the connection must satisfy three criteria for a person to be considered an independent contractor instead of an employee. It is challenging to pass the test.
Contact your Los Angeles Fair Labor Standards Act Lawyer ASAP if you've been misclassified. You may have a potential case of unpaid wages.
2. White Collar Exemptions
Employees may be exempt from overtime requirements under one of the "white collar" categories under the FLSA:
An employee must make at least $684 per week in pay, or $35,568 per year, to qualify for FLSA exemption. In most circumstances, the employee's principal duty must be exempt labor, among other conditions.
The principal duty is the primary or most significant duty as defined by the FLSA, even though this isn't necessarily the duty that takes up most of the employee's time.
Exemptions from overtime are recognized by California law as well. There are only a few significant variances between California and federal overtime exemptions:
To be correctly recognized as exempt, an employee must make at least twice the state minimum wage or at least $62,400 for firms with 26 or more employees.
There is no exemption for highly compensated employees in California. Additionally, the employer must prove that the employee performs exempt duties for more than half of the time.
Other Employment Compensations Under FLSA And California Labor Law
Aside from wages, there are other ways employers might skimp on payment. But, again, just because FLSA doesn't require them doesn't mean offending employers cannot be sued under California employment law.
Here are a few that aren't required under FLSA but are mandated in California:
All four categories aren't required to be compensated by the employer under FLSA. However, California law has regulations mandating such, and they can definitely be considered unpaid wages. Consider speaking to your FLSA Attorney in Los Angeles if you have any problems or concerns regarding them.
Hire An FLSA Lawyer in Los Angeles Near Me
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