Month: July 2015

Am I Entitled to Lunch or Rest break in California?

Am I Entitled to Lunch or Rest break in California

Employees in California are entitled to a meal break of 30 minutes, unpaid, after five hours, except when the workday will be completed in six hours or less and the employer and employee consent to waive the meal break.

The employee cannot work more than ten hours a day without a second 30-minute break, except if the workday is no more than 12 hours. The second meal break may be waived if the first meal break was not waived.

An on-duty paid meal period is permitted when the nature of work prevents relief from all duties and the parties agree in writing. Employees are also entitled to a paid ten-minute rest period for each four hours worked or major fraction thereof, as practicable, in the middle of the work period. This is not required for California employees whose total daily work time is less than three-and-a-half hours.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

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When am I Entitled to Earn Overtime in California?

When am I Entitled to Earn Overtime in California

In California, eligible employees must receive overtime if they work more than eight hours in a day or 40 hours in a week.

After working 12 hours in a day, California employees must receive double time.

If an employee works on a seventh day, that employee is entitled to time and a half for the first eight hours of work and double time for additional hours.

Although the vast majority of employers have to pay overtime, not all do. To figure out whether your employer has to pay overtime, first determine whether it’s covered by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the federal wage and hour law that sets out the overtime rules. Generally, a business is covered by the FLSA if it has $500,000 or more in annual sales.

Even if your employer is smaller, however, it is still covered by the FLSA and must pay overtime if it is engaged in what Congress calls “interstate commerce” — that is, it conducts business between states. Interstate commerce covers more than you might think, including making phone calls to or from another state, sending mail out of state, or handling goods that have come from, or will go to, another state.

If your employer is so small or local that it isn’t covered by the FLSA (which is a rare occurrence), it still might be covered by your state’s overtime law. Contact a competent employer lawyer for details.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Tip Pooling: What Service Employees Need to Know

Tip Pooling What Service Employees Need to Know

Many states allow employers to require tip pooling. All employees subject to the pool have to chip in a portion of their tips, which are then divided among a group of employees.

An employee can’t be required to pay more into the pool than is customary and reasonable, and the employee must be able to keep at least the full minimum wage — in other words, the employee can’t be required to pay any part of the tips the employer is counting towards the minimum wage into a tip pool.

Only employees who regularly receive tips can be part of the pool. Employees can’t be required to share their tips with employees who don’t usually receive their own tips, like dishwashers or cooks. And no employers are allowed in the pool: Tips from a tip pool can’t go to employers or, in some states, managers or supervisors.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Not All Workers Are Entitled to Minimum Wage – Part II

Not All Workers Are Entitled to Minimum Wage - Part II

If you are younger than 20, the minimum wage rules are different. Your employer can pay you less than the minimum wage for your first 90 days on the job. After that, however, you are entitled to the minimum wage regardless of your age.

Further, full-time students who work in retail or service stores, agriculture, or colleges and universities might not be entitled to the minimum wage if their employee has a special certificate from the federal Department of Labor. In such a situation, the employer still must pay the student at least 85% of the minimum wage.

If someone tells you that you are not entitled to the minimum wage, you should check with an employment lawyer to make sure you know your rights.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Not All Workers Are Entitled to Minimum Wage – Part I

Not All Workers Are Entitled to Minimum Wage - Part I

If you are an independent contractor as opposed to an employee, then you are not covered by minimum wage laws. Even though independent contractors work for a company, they are not legally considered employees of that company. Independent contractors — such as consultants and freelancers — work for hire. The question of whether someone is an independent contractor can be quite technical, and employers sometimes get it wrong (usually by misclassifying workers as independent contractors when they are really employees).

Also, certain categories of employees — such as farm workers and professional workers — do not fall within the minimum wage laws. If you are related to the owner of a farm on which you work, you work on a small farm, you are paid piece rate, or you work on the range with livestock, you may not be entitled to the minimum wage. However, the details of the farm worker exemptions can be quite tricky.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Tips: What Service Employees Need to Know

Tips What Service Employees Need to Know

If you receive tips as part of your compensation, you should know your legal rights.

The basic rule of tips is that they belong to employees, not the employer. Employees can’t be required to give their tips or any part of them to the company, except as part of a valid tip pooling arrangement — and even then, the tip pool must be divided only among certain other employees. The employer can’t be part of the pool.

It’s not as easy as you might think to figure out exactly how much of what a customer pays is a “tip.” For example, if the employer has to pay the credit card company a processing fee, California law requires that the employer has to give the employee the full tip indicated by the customer and pay the fee itself.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

“Immigration-Related” Relation Protections

There are laws to protect immigrant workers against unlawful retaliation. For instance, California has enacted Labor Code section 1019, prohibiting employers from engaging in various “immigration-related practices” including threatening to file or filing a false police report.

A revision of this law expands this particular section to now include threatening to file or filing a false report or complaining with any state of federal agency, not just the police.

Section 1010 also allows the court to order the appropriate government agencies to suspend certain business licenses held by the violating party for prescribed periods based on the number of violations. The licenses to be affected are to be “specific to the business location or locations where the unfair immigration-related practice occurred.”

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Community College Employers Gain Flexibility in Use of Sick Leave

commuinty college employers

Academic employees of a community college district may use an earned leave of absence for illness or injury at their discretion in cases of personal necessity or compelling personal importance, not to exceed six days in a school year.

A new law (AB 1606) adds Education Code sections allowing academic employers and probationary or permanent classified employees to use up to thirty 3days of leave in a school lead, subject to the terms of a collective bargaining agreement in effect before January 1, 2015, until expiration or renewal of the agreement.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/