Unpaid Wages & Overtime
We represent workers in lawsuits to recover wages and other benefits owed for their work. California has strict laws governing proper payment of minimum wages, regular wages, commissions and overtime pay.
California's overtime law for most industries:
- For all hours over 8 worked in a workday = 1.5 times regular hourly rate of pay
- For all hours over 40 worked in a workweek = 1.5 times regular hourly rate of pay
- For first 8 hours on the 7th consecutive day worked in a workweek = 1.5 times regular hourly rate of pay
- After 8 hours on the 7th consecutive day worked in a workweek = 2 times regular hourly rate of pay
- or all hours over 12 worked in a workday = 2 times regular hourly rate of pay
Meal & Rest Period Claims
California employees are entitled to thirty minute "meal periods" for shifts lasting over five hours, and ten minute "rest periods" for shifts lasting at least three and a half hours. Employers are required to provide these breaks to employees, and employees are entitled to one hour of wages for a missed break. Employers should have comprehensive meal and rest period policies, assist employees in scheduling their breaks, and should maintain accurate records of employee breaks.
enerally, if an employer fails to provide an employee with one or more mandated meal periods or rest periods during a workday, the employer must pay the employee one additional hour of pay for each missed meal or rest period. Employees can receive up to a maximum of two hours of pay per work day in meal- and rest-period penalties.
Wrongful Termination or Discipline
Wrongful termination or discipline can happen in many different ways.
Generally, if your employer terminates you for any unlawful reason, you can sue them to recover damages such as pain and suffering, future pay, and the value of benefits last due to your wrongful termination.
Specifically, your employer is forbidden by law from terminating you for:
- eporting unsafe working conditions
- Reporting wage/hour violations
- Discussing wages with co-worker
- Suffering discrimination on the job
- Hiring an attorney
- Missing work because of jury or witness duty
- Attending court proceedings
- Refusing to participate in illegal activities
- Taking time off to visit child's school
- Using sick leave to care for a family member
- Attending alcohol or drug rehab
ou do not have to actually be fired in order to successfully sue for wrongful termination. If you resign because your job conditions or actions by your employer were so intolerable or aggravated that a reasonable person in your position would have resigned, then you may establish wrongful termination by "constructive discharge."
Our firm fights to protect workers from discrimination in hiring, firing, or promotion, or any adverse employment action based on protected classes such as race, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, disability, or religion.
Misclassification & Independent Contractors
Employers sometimes incorrectly categorize their employees as exempt from overtime or as independent contractors. These employees are often underpaid. There are many misconceptions about how to correctly categorize an employee as exempt or non-exempt. For instance, many people think that if you are paid a salary you are not entitled to overtime, or if you make sales and are paid in commissions you are automatically exempt. Not true.
Retaliation & Whistleblower Claims
It is against the law for employers to fire, demote, or otherwise retaliate against employees who complain about unlawful activity at work or unsafe working conditions. Workers are also protected from retaliation for exercising their rights under the law, such as taking sick leave, asking about discrepancies in pay, and other questions about the workplace.