Wage and Hour Claims
When you go to work, you hope that your employer will pay you the wages to which you are entitled under the law. No non-exempt employee should need to work for less than the minimum wage. Your employer should pay you the overtime that you deserve and carefully follow rules related to tip pooling, rest breaks, and meal breaks. Unfortunately, some employers do not follow federal and state wage and hour laws. This may be an intentional choice to skirt the rules. Or it may be a mistake by an employer who means no harm. However, those who suspect that they have wage and hour claims must seek legal counsel. You should discuss your situation with the California wage and hour attorneys at The Nourmand Law Firm.Wage and Hour Claims
The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is the federal law that governs wage and hour lawsuits. However, California labor laws are often more protective of workers than is the FLSA. Common wage and hour violations include:
- Failure to pay minimum wage
- Failure to pay overtime
- Failure to provide mandatory meal and rest breaks
- Misclassification of employees as exempt or as independent contractors
- Asking employees to do their job tasks “off the clock”
- Owners, managers, or supervisors skimming tips or participating in a tip pool even though they do not interface with customers and are not in the chain of service
The state’s wage and hour laws apply to every non-exempt employee in the state. Some companies misclassify employees as independent contractors, partially in order to avoid payroll taxes and compliance with minimum wage and overtime rules. However, there is a presumption in California that you are an employee. Your employer does not have the final say over this; courts will evaluate a number of factors to make a determination.
In California, independent contractors are those who provide services under an agreement that covers the production of a particular result for particular pay when they maintain control over how they accomplish the result. Other factors can also come into play, including the type of job, the skill required, whether an office or other workplace and tools are provided by the employer, how long the work is performed, the method of payment, and whether the work is part of the company's regular business.
Under California labor law, wage and hour rules do not apply to specific categories of workers who are considered exempt employees. Executive, administrative, and professional employees are exempt from wage and hour laws.Minimum Wage
Under California law, employees should be paid a minimum wage of $13 per hour when the employer has fewer than 26 employees, or $14 per hour when it has at least 26 employees. There are annual increases scheduled for the state minimum wage until it arrives at $15 per hour for every employer in 2022. Some cities and counties have a higher minimum wage.Overtime
Wage and hour claims may also arise out of an employer's failure to pay overtime. Employers are required to pay overtime at time and a half for any work that is more than eight hours in one workday or 40 hours in one workweek, unless an employee is exempt. You are also entitled to receive time and a half for the first eight hours of work that you do on the seventh day of a workweek. California law mandates that your employer should pay you double time if you work beyond 12 hours in a workday or beyond eight hours on the seventh day of a workweek.Damages
When your employer violates wage and hour laws, you may be entitled to sue for damages under the California Labor Code. If our attorneys can establish your employer’s liability, we may be able to recover on your behalf items such as back pay, any unpaid sums when minimum wage or overtime compensation requirements were not met, and reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs.Consult Our Wage and Hour Lawyers
If you believe that you may have a wage and hour claim, you should call the experienced California lawyers at The Nourmand Law Firm. We represent employees in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Riverside Counties, as well as Oakland and Sacramento, among other areas of California. Complete our online form or call us at 310-553-3600 or 800-700-WAGE (9243).