Minimum Wage Lawsuits
By Gregory Thyberg on February 29, 2020
The minimum wage in California will be increasing steadily in the coming years to help people in all kinds of jobs earn a decent living. It’s an important consideration throughout the state given the increasing costs of housing, commuting, and other necessities.
Even though there are state laws that set the minimum hourly rate a person can be paid, there are numerous companies that violate the laws set in Sacramento, CA. If you’ve had your earnings reduced or somehow limited by your employer, a wage and hour lawyer from ThybergLaw can help. Let’s discuss lawsuits over minimum wage violations and related matters.
The Current Minimum Wage in California
As of January 1st this year, the minimum wage in California is:
- $12.00 an hour for companies with 25 employees or less
- $13.00 an hour for companies with 26 employees or more
How California’s Minimum Wage Compares to the Rest of the Nation
The federal minimum wage is currently $7.25 an hour. This just shows how much further ahead California’s own minimum wage laws are compared to the national statute.
As for other states that are comparable, Arizona, Colorado, and Maine have a $12.00 minimum wage; Washington state has a $13.50 minimum wage; and Washington, DC has a $14 minimum wage, which is increasing to $15.00 later this year.
Tips, Gratuity, and Minimum Wage Laws
Companies may blatantly try to avoid paying state minimum wage, citing tips and gratuities as covering the gap between the low hourly rate and the state minimum wage. However, unlike the past, servers in California are covered by state minimum wage laws. This means that employers must pay servers minimum wage regardless of tips received during the job.
Issues with Commissions for Minimum Wage Employees
Some companies may attempt to compensate employees solely through commissions rather than offering an hourly wage. In these cases, employees may be making less than the minimum wage if their earnings are determined solely by commissions. It’s important to speak with a Sacramento wage and hour attorney about these kinds of practices.
Independent Contractor Classification and Minimum Wage
Some companies may attempt to dodge minimum wage requirements by classifying employees as independent contractors. Independent contractors are not protected by minimum wage laws.
We acknowledge that, at the moment, there are numerous issues with current independent contractor laws in the state of California. These are unrelated to minimum wage matters. Still, it’s important to consider if a company is trying to shortchange a worker in an underhanded and unethical way.
Minimum Wage Overtime Disputes
All hourly employees are entitled to overtime pay when they work more than 8 hours in a day, more than 12 hours in a day, and/or more than 40 hours in a week. Companies that try to skimp on time-and-a-half or double-time pay for minimum wage employees must be held accountable. People should get paid fairly for the work they performed.
If you need more information about employment law issues and disputes over pay, be sure to contact a skilled wage and hour law attorney. You can also call our Sacramento practice at (916) 204-9173 to set up a consultation with attorney Gregory A. Thyberg