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Why employers should be wary of wage and hour rules

Indeed, the holiday shopping season is a few months away, but as the old adage goes “if you plan for the worst, you can expect the best.” In the case of retailers and other service businesses, the “worst” during the holidays should be a large influx of customers. With that, employer may be making plans to hire temporary and contract employees. In doing so, there may be situations where workers must put in extra hours to make sure the work is properly done.

For employers and employees alike, working overtime is nothing new. However, employers must be wary of wage and hour rules that affect how workers are paid. Essentially, the Fair Labor Standards Act establishes a weekly work week at 40 hours per week. For any hours worked in a week that exceed that standard, an employer may be required to compensate workers at time-and-a-half. This means that an employee must be paid his or her hourly rate, plus an additional amount equal to half of the worker’s hourly wage. 

In the state of California, workers who exceed eight hours in a particular day must be paid overtime. This also equates to time-and-a-half for the additional hours worked. Indeed, employers who require workers to work overtime may experience pushback given the constraints that some employees must work under (i.e. family obligations), but employers may certainly ask employees to work overtime. However, with these requests, employers must be mindful of the rules regarding overtime compensation.

The preceding is not legal advice. If you have questions about paying overtime, an experienced employment law attorney can help.

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