At the Leichter Law Firm, APC, the Los Angeles employment law attorney, Aryeh Leichter, knows that California workers are protected by both federal and state laws that ensure they are being paid at least the minimum wage, for all hours worked — including overtime.
The Fair Labor Standards Act is a federal law that oversees wage regulations for both full and part-time employees whether they are employed by a private company or government employer. FLSA regulates all federal minimum wage, child labor, recordkeeping, and overtime requirements.
The California Labor Law Act is outlined and enforced by the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) to include the minimum wage, overtime, and meal and rest break requirements, as well as recordkeeping requirements, and child labor law protections.
Like most California employment laws, the state’s laws protect more employees than its federal counterpart.
Minimum Wage Requirements
The first protection in FLSA is that employees of public agencies, interstate commerce, production of commercial goods, domestic service, hospitals, schools, and other education facilities must be paid a federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.
The state of California Department of Industrial Relations outlines and enforces the minimum wage requirements throughout the state.
California Minimum Wage Effective January 1, 2023, is:
- $15.50 per hour for workers at businesses with 26 or more employees.
- $15.50 per hour for workers at small businesses with 25 or fewer employees.
These mandatory minimum wage pay requirements change from city to city and county to county, so it is important to understand where your workplace is located may dictate a change in your minimum wage requirement.
Overtime Pay Requirements
FLSA states when an employee is sixteen or older, they may work as many hours as their employer allows. However, if an employee works more than forty hours in a workweek, they may be entitled to overtime pay.
Overtime pay must be at least one and a half times the normal hourly rate of pay for the employee.
California’s labor laws state the general overtime provisions are that a nonexempt employee 18 years of age or older, or any minor employee 16 or 17 years of age who is not required by law to attend school and is not otherwise prohibited by law from engaging in the subject work, shall not be employed more than eight hours in any workday or more than 40 hours in any workweek unless he or she receives one and one-half times his or her regular rate of pay for all hours worked over eight hours in any workday and over 40 hours in the workweek, or double time as specified below.
Eight hours of labor constitutes a day’s work, and employment beyond eight hours in any workday or more than six days in any workweek requires the employee to be compensated for the overtime at not less than:
- One and one-half times the employee’s regular rate of pay for all hours worked more than eight hours up to and including 12 hours in any workday, and for the first eight hours worked on the seventh consecutive day of work in a workweek.
- Double the employee’s regular rate of pay for all hours worked more than 12 hours in any workday and for all hours worked more than eight on the seventh consecutive day of work in a workweek.
California employers are also required to provide meal and rest breaks to non-exempt employees. Employees who work more than five hours in a day are entitled to a 30-minute meal break, and those who work more than 10 hours in a day are entitled to a second 30-minute meal break. Additionally, employees who work more than four hours are entitled to a 10-minute rest break.
Record keeping Requirements
The FLSA requires that employers keep accurate records of employee time cards and payroll. They must also have an official poster of FLSA requirements displayed for employees.
California employers must maintain complete and accurate records of their employees’ work hours following California law. These records must include the start and end times of each shift, meal and rest periods taken, and the total number of hours worked each day and week. Supervisors who alter employee time cards risk violating state labor laws and subjecting their employers to potential legal action.
Child Labor Law Requirements
The FLSA maintains regulations that ensure that work does not interfere with a child’s education or best interests. It also limits the types of jobs that children can work and the conditions they can work under.
California’s child labor laws are comprehensive, and cover details regarding in-school and out-of-school session work allowances, the permits required to work, the hours children may work, pay requirements, and occupational restrictions.
Common Violations of Both Federal and State Labor Laws
Common federal and state labor laws and workplace violations include failing to pay minimum wages or overtime, not compensating employees for off-the-clock work, refusing to compensate employees for working through breaks or meals, or misclassifying employees to avoid certain labor laws and employer compliance.
Contact the Leichter Law Firm, APC Employment Law Attorney in Los Angeles, California
If you believe your employer is violating your rights to equal pay, overtime pay, or other benefits, contact Aryeh Leichter, the Leichter Law Firm, APC founder and employment law attorney in Los Angeles County today to discuss the legal remedies that may be available for your unique workplace circumstances today, starting with a free consultation by calling 818-915-6624 or contacting the firm online.