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California Workplace Rights Blog

Friday, July 11, 2014

California Employees Retaliated Against for Complaining About Unpaid Wages Now Eligible to Receive a $10,000 Civil Penalty

California employees and job applicants who are the victims of discrimination or retaliation because they complained about unpaid wages are now eligible to receive a civil penalty of up to $10,000.  Many times employees begin working at a job only to find that their new employer is breaking the law by refusing to pay them at least minimum wage for all hours worked or overtime.  The new employee complains and is promptly fired.  Labor Code section 98.6 outlaws such conduct, but it is hard for the employee to take action because often the employee only worked a short period for the employer, and his or her damages may only be a few hundred dollars.  The employee may not be able to find an attorney to take the case and the work required for the employee to take the case to the Labor Commissioner on his or her own may not be worth the very limited potential recovery.

By directing payment of the up to $10,000 penalty to the employee who has been harmed, California now makes it possible for employees to recover an amount closer to the value of their lost wages and the aggravation and upset of having been the victim of unlawful retaliation.  


Monday, June 30, 2014

Will Recording a Conversation Help My Case?

In an employment situation, a secretly recorded conversation can cause more trouble than it's worth, which is not very much.


Read more . . .


Monday, June 30, 2014

Should I Sign an Arbitration Agreement?

If your employer gives you the chance to opt-out of an arbitration agreement, you should 100% do it.  This is why.


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Thursday, March 13, 2014

Failure to Pay for On-Call Time

To kick off the California Workplace Rights Blog, the blog is reviewing 10 of the most often violated employee wage and hour rights.  Number 10 on the list of frequently violated California wage and hour laws is failure to pay for on-call time.


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Sunday, March 9, 2014

Unpaid Internships

To kick off the California Workplace Rights Blog, the blog is reviewing 10 of the most often violated employee wage and hour rights.  Number 9 on the list is unpaid internships. 


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Thursday, March 6, 2014

Misuse of Comp Time

To begin the California Workplace Rights Blog, the blog is reviewing 10 of the most often violated employee wage and hour rights.  Number 8 on the list is employer misuse of compensatory time off or “comp time”. 


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Monday, March 3, 2014

Off the Clock Work

To start off the California Workplace Rights Blog, the blog is reviewing 10 of the most often violated employee wage and hour rights. 

Number 7 is another example of an employer failing to pay employees for all hours worked.  Some employers make employees perform tasks such as loading or unloading equipment or downloading information to an electronic device before the employee clocks in and begins earning pay or after the employee clocks out at the end of the day.  Employees who have been required to perform off the clock work may be eligible to recover regular pay and overtime pay. 

If you think your employer has failed to pay you for all hours worked, you may want to speak to an attorney to discuss whether a recovery is possible.  Contact the Law Offices of G. Samuel Cleaver by email or phone at 323-648-6676 for a free consultation. 


Friday, February 28, 2014

Failure to Pay for Travel Time

To begin the California Workplace Rights Blog, the blog is reviewing 10 of the most often violated employee wage and hour rights.  Number 6 is failure to pay for travel time. 


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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Employees Must Be Paid for All Hours Worked

To kick off the California Workplace Rights Blog, the blog is reviewing 10 of the most often violated employee wage and hour rights. Number 5 on the list is failing to pay employees for all hours worked. 


Read more . . .


Saturday, February 15, 2014

Failure to Pay for Unused Vacation at Termination

To kick off the California Workplace Rights Blog, the blog is reviewing 10 of the most often violated employee wage and hour rights.  Number four on the list is taking an employee’s vacation pay. 


Read more . . .


Monday, February 10, 2014

Misclassifying Employees as Independent Contractors

To start off the California Workplace Rights Blog, the blog is reviewing 10 of the most often violated employee wage and hour rights. The number 3 on the list is misclassification of an employee as an independent contractor. 

Very few workers are truly independent contractors. A key test of whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee is how much control the employer has.  If the employer tells the independent contractor how to do his or her job, what time to arrive and leave work, etc., then the independent contractor is most likely an employee. 

The California Department of Industrial Relations has a list of factors to help determine whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee.  The list is available at http://www.dir.ca.gov/dlse/faq_independentcontractor.htm

Being misclassified as an independent contractor can hurt an employee in many ways.  The employer doesn’t have pay its portion of social security and medicare taxes (e.g. FICA).  The employer’s portion of FICA is 7.65% percent.  That means the misclassified employee will have to pay an extra 7.65% of his or her salary in taxes that the employer should have paid.  The employer will also not contribute to state unemployment insurance on behalf of independent contractors so if the independent contractor loses his or her job, it’s possible he or she may not receive unemployment benefits.  Overtime and other wage and hour laws do not apply to independent contractors.  An independent contractor also does not receive benefits such as health insurance, sick leave and vacation pay that an employer provides to regular employees.  

If you are concerned you may have been misclassified as an independent contractor email or call the Law Offices of G. Samuel Cleaver at 323-648-6676 for a free consultation today. 


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The Law Offices of G. Samuel Cleaver, provides legal services throughout California, including the cities of Los Angeles (L.A.), Glendale, Santa Monica, Burbank, Anaheim, Costa Mesa, and Irvine; Los Angeles County, Orange County, Riverside County, San Bernardino County, San Diego County, Ventura County, Santa Barbara County, Kern County and Fresno County; and the Inland Empire.



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