If your employer has broken California wage and hour rules, filing a lawsuit can be your best course of action. It might be difficult and complicated to file a claim against a current or former employer on your own which is why we recommend calling an employment law attorney in California.
Keep reading to get answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about wage and hour disputes then contact PLBSH at (800) 435-7542 if you have additional questions or require a legal consultation.
Which California wage and hour statutes may I use to bring a lawsuit against my employer?
We frequently work with clients who have strong legal claims against their employers. Examples including erroneously categorizing workers as “exempt employees” or “independent contractors” to avoid paying overtime or giving them the breaks they need and failure to follow California overtime regulations, sometimes by promoting or enforcing “work off the clock.”
Other examples of valid wage and hour disputes include not giving employees required meal or rest breaks or forcing them to work through them or failing to provide hazard pay even though it is stipulated in the employment contract. We also work with workers whose employers are not paying them the required minimum wage in California.
How long do I have to decide if I want to sue my employer in California for unpaid wages and hours?
For wage and hour litigation filed in California, the “statute of limitations” is three years after the date of the most recent infraction.
What compensation am I entitled to in a wage and hour case in California?
Depending on whatever legislation your employer has broken, you might expect to earn different amounts of damages if your wage and hour claim is successful. For example, if your employer fails to pay overtime or the minimum wage, you are entitled to recover the unpaid wages together with interest and any reasonable legal expenses.
Additionally, if your employer did not act in good faith and you were paid less than the minimum wage, you may be entitled to extra “liquidated damages” in the amount of the unpaid necessary wages plus interest. You may be entitled to one hour’s compensation at the standard rate for each break you missed if your wage/hour litigation is about an employer’s failure to give you the necessary food or rest breaks.
Can my employer take adverse action against me because I filed a wage and hour lawsuit?
According to California employment regulations, employees cannot be punished for filing wage and hour claims or reporting wage/hour law breaches. If your employer fires you for claiming your rights under California wage/hour law, this is seen as “wrongful termination”. Retaliation at work in other ways that don’t amount to dismissal is also prohibited.
You will have a further cause of action against your employer if they retaliate because you filed a wage/hour complaint.
What is the next step if I have a wage and hour dispute?
Talk to an employment law attorney. You can do so easily by reaching out to PLBSH at (800) 435-7542. Let us use our experience to help you through this difficult time and get you the compensation you are due.