Wage Law and Hour Law California | Aiman-Smith & Marcy
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Unpaid Overtime, Breaks or Expenses

Wage and Hour

(Unpaid Rest Breaks, Unpaid Meal Breaks, Unpaid Overtime, Compensation)

Wage and hour claims in California have been increasing in recent years due to changing employment laws and employee awareness. Still many employers fail to properly pay their employees for the hours they work. Although this may be intentional in some circumstances, many employers do not keep current with wage and hour laws and they do not consult legal counsel which leaves them open to wage and hour claims by employees that are not compensated according to California and Federal employment law.


Paid Rest Breaks

When an employee works a certain number of hours they become eligible for a paid rest period. This is generally 10 minutes for every 4 hours worked. It is not optional that an employer provide these breaks to employees, it is required by law. An employer cannot mandate that you work through your rest period or sanction you for not completing work during a rest period. If you believe that your employer has not provided you with paid rest breaks when you were entitled, contact a wage and hour claims attorney today.


Unpaid Meal Breaks

Employees are legally entitled to at least a 30 minute meal break if they work more than 5 hours in a workday. The meal break must occur no later than the 5th hour in which the employee works. A second unpaid meal break must be provided when an employee works more than 10 hours. In order for an employer to be compliant, the employer must relieve the employee of their duty and relinquish control of the employee’s activities and allow at least a 30 minute uninterrupted meal break.  If your employer has not provided you with unpaid meal breaks according to law, you may be entitled to compensation.


Unpaid Overtime

Generally an employer must pay overtime to an employee if they work more than 8 hours in a workday or more than 40 hours in a workweek. Some exceptions may apply with alternative work schedules. The method of calculating when and how much overtime is due can be confusing to both employers and employees. Regardless of any confusion or mistake, overtime hours are still due.


Required Compensation and Reimbursements

According to the California Labor Code, an employer has to compensate an employee for anything that the employee has to spend in order to do a job or because of a direct order from the boss. Basically, if the boss tells you to go buy pencils for the office, he or she has to cut you a check later for however much you spent on the pencils.

There are also very specific things that the employer must cover. Does the job require a bond or a photograph? Does the employer require an employee to wear a uniform? Furthermore, a prospective employer can’t require you to pay for a medical examination that is a condition of employment. According to the California Labor Code section 401, the employer has to cover these expenses.

Call Aiman-Smith & Marcy at 510-817-2711 if you have any questions regarding your wages, overtime and not being fairly compensated for your expenses.

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