1)  Failing to Pay Separate Hourly Pay and Separate Rest Period Pay to Piece Rate and Commission Employees

Piece rate and commission employees must be paid separate hourly pay for time during the work day when they are not doing work that earns piece rate or commissions. This includes include 20 minutes hourly pay per day for rest periods.

2)  Failure to Reimburse All Business Expenses

Employees are entitled to reimbursement for automobile, cell phone, marketing, and virtually all expenses incurred as a part of their job.

3)  Taking Deductions From Wages

The California Labor Code prohibits deductions from wages to pay portions of assistant’s salaries or bonuses, processing fees, uncollected fees from third parties, uniforms, cash shortages, or differential shortages between quoted sales prices and actual sales prices.

4)  Overtime Misclassification/Reclassification Without Paying Back Pay/Miscalculating Overtime Rates

Simply paying workers a salary does not relieve employers from paying overtime unless they qualify for a specific exemption. Computer technology employees, loan officers, and many store managers work long hours and weekends, are paid a salary without premium overtime pay, but do not qualify under any overtime exemption by devoting more than 50% of their time to exempt duties. Employees are entitled to four years of back pay. Companies are reclassifying salaried employees from overtime exempt to overtime non-exempt but failing to pay four years of overtime owed.

Employers are required to include earnings for non-discretionary bonuses in calculating workers’ hourly rate of pay for premium overtime pay of 1.5 times the hourly rate for hours worked in excess of eight hours per day and 2.0 times the hourly rate for hours worked over twelve hours per day.

Employees paid by the number of jobs they complete or people they service during the day (“piece rate” employees) must also be paid overtime of one half their regular rate of pay, calculated as total weekly income, including expense reimbursements paid as wages, divided by total hours worked.

Non-exempt employees paid hourly or salary wages plus commission must be paid a separate “commission overtime” rate in addition to the hourly overtime rate. When a commission is paid on a weekly basis, it is added to the employee’s other earnings for that workweek and the total is divided by the total number of hours worked in the workweek to obtain the employee’s regular hourly rate and applicable overtime rate. When payment of a commission is delayed until after the regular payday for the period during which the commission was earned, the employer must calculate additional overtime compensation by dividing total commissions by the total hours during the commission period to calculate the regular hourly rate and paying one half the regular hourly rate for all overtime hours.

California employers are not allowed to use any “comp time,” failing to pay overtime premium pay by taking overtime from one day or week and giving time off on a subsequent day or week.

5)  Failing to Provide Uninterrupted Rest and Meal Breaks

Employees who are not provided a paid, uninterrupted rest period for every four hours or major portion thereof worked and an unpaid, uninterrupted 30-minute meal period free to leave the premises for shifts of over five hours is entitled to an additional hour of pay.

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