California Wage and Hour Laws

California workers deserve to be paid fairly. This includes receiving payment for all hours worked as well as payments for any agreed-upon commissions. California has long been known as a worker-friendly state, particularly when it comes to laws protecting wages. Here, we want to discuss the most common wage and hour laws that you need to know when you start working in California. These laws are crucial tools for ensuring that employers treat their workers fairly in this state. Read on to learn more about the wage and hour laws in California and if you have additional questions, speak with a qualified Orange County employment attorney.

California Wage And Hour Laws

Explaining the California Wage and Hour Laws

One of the most important laws regarding wages in California is the minimum wage law. In nearly all circumstances, employers throughout this state are required to pay the minimum wage, which is currently (as of January 1, 2021):

  • $14.00 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees.
  • $13.00 per hour for employers with 25 or fewer employees.

These wages will increase by $1.00 an hour until the year 2023, to cap out at $15 an hour for all workers, regardless of how many employees there are with the company.

Additionally, there are other municipalities throughout California that have set different minimum wages. Some municipalities have chosen to enforce a higher minimum wage, and these must be adhered to by the companies inside the jurisdictions.

Additionally, non-exempt employees in California are entitled to overtime pay if they work:

  • More than 8 hours in a single day, or
  • More than 40 hours in a single workweek

Employers are required to pay time and a half (1.5) for any hours over these limits. Additionally, employees will be entitled to be paid double their hourly wage if they work more than 12 hours in a single workday or more than 8 hours on a seventh consecutive day of work during the week.

Other Wage Issues That Arise in California

Even though minimum wage and overtime issues dominate wage problems, these are certainly not the only types of violations that could occur. In addition to these issues, California also has laws regarding the following:

  • Payment during meal and rest breaks
  • Off-the-clock work
  • Reimbursement for expenses
  • Timely payment while employed
  • Payment after termination
  • Lower wages for tipped employees

Additionally, the state of California has been embroiled in a debate over the classification of workers as either employees or independent contractors. The state legislature passed a law that made it more difficult for employers to classify workers as independent contractors, but the voters in this state overturned this law through a referendum. However, it is still illegal to misclassify workers for the purpose of avoiding paying them their rightful wages and benefits.

Do You Need an Attorney for This Case?

If you or somebody you love is having problems securing your rightful pay in California, seek legal assistance as soon as possible. A lawyer can use their resources and legal expertise to fully investigate the payment issues and stand up for you in court in order to secure the compensation you are entitled to. Unfortunately, employees in these situations can struggle when trying to stand up to their employers by themselves. A skilled attorney can handle every aspect of these claims, including all communication with an employer and their legal team.

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