In the beautiful region of Escondido, California, lives a dedicated workforce that spends countless hours in their roles to keep the local economy thriving. While business can be pleasurable, it also has the risk of unethical behavior entering the scene and causing disruption. An Escondido wage and hour lawyer can help to hold anyone who may try to violate your rights as an employee in California accountable.
Issues concerning wages and work hours are one of the major employment disruptions that can cause a ton of stress on an employee. Having a better understanding of employment law can help victims determine if they potentially have grounds for a wage and hour case.
One of the most prominent topics within employment law is fair compensation, pay periods, and overtime. Employees in Escondido are entitled to receive the wages that were outlined in their employment contract, including overtime compensation, if the employee is paid hourly rather than a predetermined salary.
Any employer who is caught trying to take advantage of their employees by bending the rules to not pay what they have rightfully earned could face significant repercussions, such as costly fines or even losing their position at the company.
Some of the most common disputes raised concerning wages and hours include:
Overtime: Sometimes, there is a disagreement over whether an employee is entitled to overtime compensation within their position. In other instances, an employee may raise a concern that they have not been paid correctly in the past for working more hours than their traditional schedule.
Wages: Issues over the total amount and consistency of paychecks can cause contention between an employee and their employer. This sometimes includes an accusation that an employee has been paid less than minimum wage or that they do not receive pay on a regular basis.
Meal and rest breaks: California law is specific about breaks an employee is entitled to during their workday. For example, non-exempt workers must be offered a 30-minute meal break if they work more than 5 hours in one shift. This break must be completely uninterrupted, with no expectation that they are to complete any of their duties during this time.
Compensation: There can be contention over different payments beyond the employee’s set salary. Depending on the role, an employee may also be financially compensated through bonuses, commissions, or other benefits.
These arrangements can be less straightforward than a traditional salary, which is why it is recommended to have an employment attorney review the details of these alternate compensation packages to assess if any violations have occurred.
Hour issues: Sometimes, there are disputes between an employee and their employer over how many hours were actually spent working. Gray areas such as time spent traveling or preparing for a specific event could call into question what an employee should be legally paid for and what might just be considered an employee volunteering extra hours of their own accord outside of work.
In any of these cases and more, an Escondido employment lawyer can help uncover where the point of contention lies within a disagreement and what grounds there may be to file a lawsuit against the alleged violator.
Unfortunately, there is no universal rate that can give someone an exact estimate of what they will pay for their California attorney’s services. However, there are certain factors that can drive up costs. For instance, the length of time they have spent practicing law and how long it takes to complete your case will both influence the final price.
While it may seem instinctual to try and find ways to lower your attorney fees, keep in mind that this upfront investment into your legal representation can yield even greater financial gains in the end, depending on the outcome of your case.
California does not enforce any rule that states someone is forced to work minimum hours of work per day or week. While a full-time employee is generally characterized by working at least 40 hours per week, what they consider full-time employment for their business is up to the individual employer. Whatever that number is, it should be clearly outlined in any job offer and employee contract before they agree to take on the role.
While there is no rule for a minimum amount of time spent working, there are rules that state an employee must be compensated extra money for working over 40 hours per week.
Yes, California requires employers to offer their employees a 30-minute uninterrupted break from work when they work more than 5 hours. The only option for this to be excused is if there is a mutual agreement between the employer and employee that the individual would prefer to skip the break. This type of agreement must be documented and signed by both parties. In addition, employees are also entitled to 10 minutes of rest for every 4 hours they work.
If there is any evidence an employer has failed to provide these breaks when their employee would like them, it can result in significant penalties.
Yes, there may be grounds to file an official lawsuit against your employer if they have failed to provide you with the mandated meal or rest breaks under California law. You will need to collect evidence such as timecards, work schedules, and any personal communications you have of their denied request as evidence for your position. If any other colleagues can testify that they either witnessed or have also experienced the same situation, it can be of huge help as well.
If this is proven to be true, the employer may be required to pay for all additional wages for each day a break was missed and may face additional penalties for labor violations. If the investigation uncovers a larger systematic violation, the employer could be subject to a class action lawsuit.
If you believe your employer has violated one of your wage or hour rights under employment law, contact an Escondido employment attorney today at The Law Office of Frank S. Clowney III. For years, we have been dealing with work-hour issues and scenarios where employers are found guilty of wage and hour violations. We understand the financial implications these violations can have on your life and would be honored to help restore any damages that are rightfully yours.