Federal and State Wage Laws

Under federal and state law, there are wage rules that employers must follow when determining an employee’s compensation. The federal laws governing wages are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which contains minimum wage and overtime standards. The California Labor Code contains similar standards for employers in the State.

The federal overtime law requires all employees who are not exempt from the FLSA to be paid one and a half times their regular rate of pay for all hours that are worked in excess of 40 in a workweek. Under California law, employees are to be paid one and a half times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked over eight in a day and 40 in a workweek. In addition, in California employees are to be paid double for any hours worked over 12 in a day and for any hours worked over eight on the seventh consecutive day of work in a week.

Overtime Law Issues

The biggest issue surrounding overtime rules is whether the law applies to a particular employee. Under both federal and state law, certain employees don’t have to be paid overtime. Some of these federal and state exemptions are for executive positions, administrative positions, professional positions, some computer positions, employees of the state or local government, outside sales personnel, taxi drivers, actors, and babysitters.

Many employers will claim that their employees are exempt from overtime when they actually are not. Most of the conflicts arise from positions which are executive, professional or administrative. Employers will claim that their employees are working in an executive, professional or administrative position when they actually are not in order to get out of paying overtime. Therefore, there are standards which must be met in order for a position to be classified as executive, professional or administrative.

In order for a position to be considered as an executive position, an employer must show three things: that the employee’s duty is either managing the employer’s business or a specific department of the business, that the employee manages at least two full-time employees, and that the employee has the power to hire and fire employees.

To prove that an employee is working in an administrative position, an employer must show that the employee’s primary duty is the performance of office work related to the management or general business operations of the company, and that the primary duty involved the exercise of discretion and independent judgment with respect to important company business. Generally, administrative employees are those who keep the business running, such as HR personnel, computer support personnel, and accounting personnel.

In order for a position to be classified as a professional exemption, an employer must prove that an employee’s job duties involved work that required advanced knowledge in a specific field, and that the knowledge must be acquired by an advanced degree. This could include doctors, lawyers, scientists, pharmacists, and also can include certain creative positions.

Contact Oakland Employment Law Firm, Liberty Law If Your Overtime Rights Were Violated

Under the FLSA and California law, if you were entitled to overtime and you weren’t paid it, your legal rights have been violated. Under law, you cannot waive your right to overtime or take a lesser amount of money. If you have illegally been denied compensation, you have the right to make a claim for that compensation.

At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty believes that all employees who are entitled to overtime should be paid. If you haven’t been paid for overtime in the Oakland area, call Micha Star Liberty, Oakland employment lawyer, at 415-896-1000 or 510-645-1000. She works with clients in the surrounding cities, including San Francisco, Berkeley, Fairfield, Tracy and Hayward. Call today for a free consultation.



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