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Common Employment Law Questions

What is the required overtime pay rate in California?

The minimum overtime pay rate is 1.5 times the normal hourly pay rate for every hour worked in excess of forty hours in a week or eight hours per day. Under certain circumstances the overtime pay rate is increased to double the normal hourly rate.

How is overtime calculated if an employee is paid a salary?

The employee's hourly rate is calculated by dividing the employee's annual salary, including bonus, by the number of hours worked in a normal work year (i.e., 2080 hours). For example, an employee paid an annual salary of $20,000.00 has an equivalent hourly rate of:

20,000/2080 = $9.60

Can my employer terminate my employment if I exercise my legal rights?

NO! It is against the law for an employer to take any retaliatory action against an employee in response to an employee exercising a legal right such as seeking overtime pay, or other legally required employment benefits. Such conduct by an employer exposes the employer to further legal action for all damages caused by the retaliation -- including claims for punitive damages.

How does an employee prove work time if no time records were kept?

Fortunately, it is the employer's legal obligation to maintain accurate time records for all employees. An employer's failure to maintain such records does not impact an employee's right to claim overtime. The employee's hours can be based upon employee testimony which approximates the number of hours worked. Employees are allowed to testify from memory based upon the approximate or average number of hours worked in a day/week/month. That approximation is controlling unless the employer can respond with more credible evidence to contradict the employee's testimony.

Can my employer request that I waive overtime?

NO! It is illegal for an employer to enter into an agreement with an employee whereby an employee waives overtime compensation. Any such agreements are void.


If you have further questions, please call the Law Office of Joseph Antonelli at (909) 393-0223 OR e-mail us at jantonelli@antonellilaw.com for a free, private and confidential case evaluation.


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