But the employee may waive this second meal break if: Example: Rick is working an 11-hour shift at a fulfillment center. In addition, her employer is required to give her at least 20 minutes’ worth of rest period during her shift. An exception to the rule is made for bona fide “exempt” employees. California employees are entitled to one day of rest in seven, but the state labor code isn't clear about how that seven-day period should be measured. . Also, other kinds of exempt employees are still entitled to meal break and rest break rights. (“12. Non-exempt employees, however, are protected by California wage and hour laws. In addition, employees who are working more than ten (10) hours in a day must also be given a second thirty (30) minute meal break. Can my employer require me to work or be “on-call” during my meal or rest break? Below, our California labor law attorneys discuss the following frequently asked questions about meal and rest break requirements for employees: If you have further questions after reading this article, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group. Section 551 of the California Labor Code provides that "every person employed" in "any occupation" is entitled to one day of rest in every seven days, and Section 552 further clarifies that no employer is permitted to require employees to work in excess of six days out of a seven-day period. For example, an employee who works a seven-hour shift is entitled to two 10-minute rest breaks—one break for the first four hours, and a second break for the last three hours. The Labor Code exempts employers from providing a day of rest “when the total hours of employment do not exceed 30 hours in any week or six hours in any one day thereof.” Does this exemption apply “so long as an employee works six hours or less on at least one day of the applicable week, or does it apply only when an employee works no more than six hours on each and every day of the week?” There are also other scenarios where workers are entitled to overtime in California. If you don't trust that your employee will refrain from answering emails, taking phone calls, or doing a few minutes of work on that project due next week, keep her laptop in the office and turn off her emails for the time in question. The Labor Code prohibits an employer from "caus[ing] [its] employees to work more than six days in seven" (Lab. Shouse Law Group is here to help you fight back. Therefore, if your employer asks that you work while eating during a meal period, or remain on call during a rest period, this is legally equivalent to denying you your meal or rest break. Both California and federal laws require that all employees be classified as either exempt or non-exempt from overtime. The meal break must be provided within the first 5 hours of the workday. The new laws — some of which were signed into law just weeks ago — address several topics including sick leave, worker classification, employee leave, workers’ compensation, safety regulation enforcement, wages and unemployment insurance. Under California law, employers are required to provide employees at least one day’s rest in seven. Rest Periods (A) Every employer shall authorize and permit all employees to take rest periods, which insofar as practicable shall be in the middle of each work period. Rest breaks must be paid. The Labor Code Prohibits “Causing” Employees To Work Seven Days In A Row. The California Supreme Court has clarified California’s “day of rest” statute. But that exemption has many requirements which your employer may have blown. S224611 (May 8, 2017). Under California labor law, breaks for rest are also a requirement for those “non-exempt” employees who work more than 3 and half hours in one day. The employee is allowed to revoke this agreement in writing at any time. Shouse Law Group has wonderful customer service. The most important group of exempt employees in California is white-collar exempt employees, who must meet all of the following requirements: In addition, California laws on meal and rest breaks do not apply to workers who meet the legal definition of independent contractors. The meal break must be provided within the first 5 hours of the workday. You have successfully saved this page as a bookmark. On an employee-by-employee basis, workers could be in slightly different roles or report to different managers, and therefore the factual interpretation could be different for each plaintiff, Meppen added. "If on any one day an … The DLSE focused on the fact that the schedules for exempt employees were being reduced to 4-day workweeks, which matched the 20 percent reduction in their salaries. Simply paying an employee a salary does not make them exempt, nor does it change any requirements for compliance with wage and hour laws. Like California overtime laws, California meal and rest period requirements only apply to non-exempt employees.8. California break laws require that employers provide non-exempt employees with rest periods and meal periods during the workday. In particular, California employers must: Pay exempt employees at least $1,040 per week ($54,080 annually). If you are a supervisor, you may fall under the supervisor exemption, otherwise known as the executive exemption. S/he would then owe you damages equivalent to 250 hours’ worth of pay at your regular rate. The employees argued that the California "day of rest" rule should apply on a rolling basis—otherwise, employees could be required to work up to 12 consecutive days without a day off. This ruling means that if an employer's workweek runs from Sunday to Saturday, it's not a problem for an employee to be scheduled to work every day from Wednesday to Wednesday—even though that's more than seven consecutive days of work, said Sandy Rappaport, an attorney with Hanson Bridgett in San Francisco. Employees who work more than ten (10) hours in a day are entitled to a second 30-minute meal break. For example, they can have a sign-up sheet for employees who want to work additional days, and the sheet could state that the work is voluntary and not a requirement of employment. In addition, California has a 7th day overtime premium on the 7th consecutive day worked in a … Section 552 goes on to state that no employer may require employees to work more than six days out of a seven-day period, and any employer that tries to enforce a seven-day workweek may be guilty of a misdemeanor. Under California law, employees are entitled to “one day’s rest in seven.” But what, exactly, does that mean? Mendoza filed a putative class action in state court under the Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) on his own behalf and those similarly situated hourly, non-exempt employees in California. "The court essentially said that the employer isn't going to be liable simply by allowing an employee to choose not to take the day of rest," Rappaport said. Finally, the meal period requirements of the California Labor Code do not apply to unionized employees in certain industries whose collective bargaining agreements provide for meal breaks on a different schedule. Employees are entitled to ten (10) minutes of rest period for each four (4) hours, or a substantial fraction thereof, that they work in a day. We have local employment law offices in and around Los Angeles, San Diego, Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, San Jose, Oakland, the San Francisco Bay area, and several nearby cities. Some part-time employees don't have to be offered a day of rest, but the exception to the rule is also vague. The California Supreme Court clarified that part-time employees are exempt if they never work more than six hours in any day of the workweek. California’s “Day Of Rest” Law Christopher Mendoza and Meagan Gordon were hourly employees for Nordstrom, working in varying capacities. These breaks are considered work; therefore, the employee is to be paid for their time of rest. Under California law, employees are entitled to receive 1.5 their rate of pay for all daily hours worked in excess of eight but less than twelve. In California, employees are entitled to 1 day of rest every 7 days. Today, the California Supreme Court answered three questions related to seventh day of work rules (Mendoza v. Nordstrom Inc., No. Let SHRM Education guide your way. 16 This means that, if you are an exempt employee, your employer does not need to pay you time and a half if you work more than eight hours in a workday, or more than 40 hours in a workweek, or otherwise “work off the clock.” Nonexempt salaried employees in California are entitled to unpaid, uninterrupted meal breaks of at least 30 minutes for every five-hour work shift. 1. California's "Day of Rest" Statute Finally Explained. The California Supreme Court clarified that part-time employees are exempt if they never work more than six hours in any day of the workweek. } Current California Law California day-of-rest laws generally entitle employees to one day's rest in seven and prohibit employers from "causing" an employee to work more than six in seven days. 2. This “day of rest” rule is promulgated by Labor Code sections 551 and 552. They are not subject to this rule. However, a rest period need not be authorized for employees whose total daily work time is less than three and one-half (3 1/2) hours. Further, employers must maintain time records on commissioned employees as those employees are exempt only from overtime requirements and not from meal/rest period or other requirements for non-exempt employees. Each mandatory rest break is to be 10 minutes long, and spaced evenly throughout each work period. An employee cannot simply agree to be considered exempt from overtime. For questions about California employee meal and rest break requirements or to discuss your case confidentially with one of our skilled California labor and employment attorneys, do not hesitate to contact us at Shouse Law Group. First, "when the nature of the employment… A lower federal court interpreted the California code sections to exempt employees if they work less than six hours on any one day of the week, which knocked out the case in the lower court. Under California law, overtime pay is due for work hours exceeding eight and up to 12 in a day, and the initial eight hours worked on the seventh consecutive day of a workweek. Definitely recommend! Successful wage and hour class action lawsuits often involve failure to provide meal breaks or rest periods. In California, there are two main sets of laws that govern these rights: Exempt employees must still be paid the minimum required salary even if work has slowed due to COVID-19. 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