California employment laws are designed to protect workers from a variety of unfair employment practices. Here are three common wage and hour violations:
- Employees being asked to perform work duties before or after their scheduled shift. — Your employer should not ask you to do any work duties off the clock. Work duties may include anything work-related, including training, phone calls, errands or prep work. You could be owed significant back pay if your employer required you to work off the clock.
- Employees being denied their meal and rest breaks. — Under California law, nonexempt employees are entitled to uninterrupted meal and rest breaks that are free of any work duties. If you are denied your breaks or if they are interrupted by work-related matters, including work communications, you could be owed significant additional pay for each day you didn’t receive your uninterrupted break. To learn more about when you should receive breaks and for how long, please see our overview of rights to meal and rest breaks.
- Employees being denied overtime pay. — In California, overtime pay (1.5 times the regular rate) kicks in when an employee works more than eight hours in a workday. Also, on the seventh consecutive day of work in a workweek, employers are required to pay employees 1.5 times the regular rate for the first eight hours of work. Employers are additionally required to pay double an employee’s regular rate for all hours worked above 12 in a workday and for all hours worked above eight on the seventh consecutive day in a workweek.
If you have been asked to perform work off the clock, or if you have been denied uninterrupted breaks, or if you are not being paid for all the hours you work, it may be time to look into your legal options. An experienced attorney may be able to help you get the pay you are owed, as well as prevent wage and hour violations from happening in the future.