Sacramento, CA (Law Firm Newswire) December 8, 2015 - The California Labor Code mandates businesses pay proper overtime and provide meal and rest breaks.
According to a recent class action lawsuit filed against Seasons Hospice and Palliative Care of California, Inc., defendants allege they were neither paid overtime as required under the California Labor Code, nor were they accorded meal and rest breaks.
If, as alleged, workers’ bonus pay did not get factored into the hourly rate, employees would get paid less for overtime work than entitled to by law.
“The main issue in this case is overtime pay and non-discretionary bonus wages paid to workers based on job performance,” said Sacramento employment attorney Deborah Barron, not involved in the case. “Court documents indicate bonus pay was not included in the worker’s hourly rate when overtime pay was figured out for hours worked, per California’s overtime laws.”
Overtime pay lawsuits are typically filed when employees have attempted to settle the matter with his or her employer, but have not been successful. Whether the reason for not paying overtime for missed meal and rest breaks happens to be sloppy bookkeeping, misclassification of workers, or sheer ignorance of the law, not paying these wages is illegal — period.
As is often the case with unpaid overtime lawsuits, secondary issues in this case were also documented: missed rest periods and meal breaks. Meal breaks must be 30 uninterrupted minutes after hour five of working. Allegedly, Seasons Hospice and Palliative Care of California, Inc., did not have a policy to provide for such breaks (meal or rest periods) and workers were often on the job for their full shift, without any breaks. Missed rest breaks translate into more hours worked than compensated for in this lawsuit.
“If you find yourself working a full shift with no breaks, speak to a knowledgeable employment lawyer and find out what the law is in relation to your job. Bring your attorney all pertinent documents relating to company policies and your terms of employment. Quite often employers cut corners when it comes to providing workers with fair wages and appropriate breaks, as mandated by law,” said Barron. “It’s my job to help you get the wages to which you are entitled.”
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