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2 myths about part-time workers in California

On Behalf of | Mar 25, 2024 | Wage & Hour Law

Both full-time and part-time workers are fundamental to most companies in California. Part-time workers carry out key duties in the same way that full-time workers do.

Unfortunately, there are some misconceptions that part-time workers have fewer rights than full-time workers. This simply isn’t true. Part-time workers have a host of protections under the law. Here are two common myths about part-time workers in California.

Part-time workers don’t have to be paid minimum wage

The entitlement to the minimum wage in California applies to both full-time and part-time employees. Some companies believe that if they give workers fewer hours per week, they can also pay them a reduced wage, but this is not true. The minimum wage in California is $16 per hour. That wage must be paid to both full-time and part-time workers.

Part-time workers are not entitled to paid sick leave

Another common misconception about part-time workers in California is that they do not have access to paid sick leave (PSL). This is not the case. Part-time workers who have been employed by the same company for 30 days or more and have completed 90 days of work before requesting sick leave, are entitled to PSL. The rate of PSL accrued is one hour for every 30 hours worked.

Valid reasons for taking PSL include:

  • When a worker is suffering from a physical or mental illness and needs to seek medical treatment or requires time off to recover
  • When a worker requires time off to care for a family member who is seriously ill

Both full-time and part-time workers have a right to be paid fairly. Unfortunately, the rights of part-time workers can be taken less seriously by some companies. If you feel like you haven’t been paid appropriately, it may be possible to lodge a wage and hour claim.  The laws in this area can be complex, so it’s important to seek legal guidance as you explore your options.