Federal and state laws safeguard the rights of California employees and ensure that they get proper compensation for the work they do. If such laws did not exist, working conditions would not only be hostile but also inhumane and hazardous. Employees should be aware of their rights.
The rights of non-exempt employees
Wage and hour laws provide extra protection to non-exempt employees in California because of the nature of their duties and pay structure. As a non-exempt employee, you have the right to the following:
- Overtime pay for time worked in excess of eight hours in a day, 40 hours in a week or six days in a week
- Meal and rest breaks for non-exempt employees who work longer than three and a half hours in a day
- Minimum wage
If you are a non-exempt employee, you should make sure your employer does not misclassify you as exempt. You deserve reasonable pay and adequate rest.
The rights of all California employees
Even though California is an at-will state, employers cannot terminate employees due to unjust causes. Employment laws also ensure that employers throughout the state prioritize the health, safety and well-being of their employees. Every employee in California has a right to the following:
- Workplace safety and privacy
- Family and medical leaves
- Paid sick leaves
Furthermore, they also have a right to protection from the following:
- Wrongful termination
- Workplace retaliation
Employee rights ensure fair treatment across the workplace, but they do not necessarily guarantee it. Discrimination and harassment are still quite common in the office, even to this day. For that reason, legal actions and options are available for employees. By knowing your rights, you can prevent others from violating them and recover damages for any unlawful adverse actions you suffered.