Wage and Hour Violations
San Diego Wage & Hour Violation Attorney
Representing Workers in Disputes with Employers
Many employers take advantage of their employees concerning how they are paid. The Gould Firm represents employees whose rights have been violated. Our San Diego wage and hour violation lawyer will pursue your employer to recover monetary damages, including lost wages, penalties, interest, and attorney’s fees you may be entitled to.
Many employees do not realize that federal, state, and local laws protect them by requiring employers to pay minimum wages and overtime wages, and provide meal breaks, rest periods, or compensation in lieu thereof. These laws also provide employees other rights concerning how their paychecks are calculated.
Our firm believes that employees should be treated fairly and be paid for all the hours they work. Both the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and California wage and hour laws make it illegal to not pay employees the money they have earned. Yet, some employers will try to avoid paying overtime by altering timecards or requiring work to be performed off the clock.
Does your employer routinely ask you to work off the clock to avoid paying overtime? Are you being paid less than minimum wage? Are the hours you actually work all being taken into account? Does your employer claim that you are an independent contractor in order to avoid paying you a fair salary for the work you perform? Does your employer claim that you are a manager and are not entitled to overtime? Have you earned commissions which have been denied due to your employer falsely claiming you are an independent contractor? These are all ways your employer may be hiding the fact they are cheating you out of your wages and violating the law.
Another misconception of some employers is the idea that if an employee is paid a salary, the employee is not entitled to overtime compensation. This is often incorrect. California wage and hour laws interpret a salary as a figure based on 40 hours per week and eight hours per day. If you work more than either 40 hours per week or more than eight hours per day, you may still be entitled to compensation above and beyond your salary. Some employers try to avoid paying employees their appropriate wages by claiming that an employee is a supervisor when they are not. This is illegal, and the employer can be held accountable.
If your employer tells you that you are exempt from overtime pay or other benefits because you are “management” or in “sales,” this may be an attempt by your employer to avoid paying you the wages you are entitled to. There are specific requirements that must be met for you to be deemed an “exempt” employee, and your employer cannot avoid paying you overtime by saying you hold a position you and the employer know you do not.
Another area where employers often fail to compensate their employees is the failure to provide meal periods and rest breaks. Employers in California must provide and document meal breaks of 30 minutes for every five hours of work. However, certain exceptions may apply, as in the case of an agreed-upon written waiver. For every meal break violation, the employer must pay the employee one additional hour of pay as a penalty. The employee is also entitled to a 10-minute rest break after three and a half hours worked in a four-hour shift. This is time for the employee to rest, relax, and do as they choose. For every rest break violation, the employer must also pay one additional hour of pay to the employee as a penalty.
If you or your co-workers believe you may have been cheated or taken advantage of by your employer, you can speak confidentially with an attorney with the expertise to advise you on your rights and evaluate whether your employer has failed to comply with rules and regulations. If you were deprived of wages, meal breaks, or rest breaks, The Gould Firm can help. Our wage and hour violation attorney in San Diego understands California’s employment laws and is here to help.