Los Angeles Unpaid Wages & Overtime Attorney

California workers who feel their employer is taking advantage of them have a right to speak out and defend themselves, and they deserve to be paid for the hours they work. There are laws that protect employees from unpaid wages and unpaid overtime. A Los Angeles unpaid wages and overtime lawyer is a great resource for workers needing to collect back pay.

The primary goal of California Employment Counsel, APC, is to see to it that our client’s work is compensated and their employers pay them the owed wages they earned. With our dedicated and unwavering approach to unpaid wages, we work with our clients to fight for justice and ensure employers are held responsible when they break state wage laws. We have the experience and understanding of the legal system and the law to get our clients paid for the wages they earn.

Los Angeles Unpaid Wages & Overtime Lawyer

What Can an Unpaid Wages Lawyer Help With?

A California employment attorney can provide a variety of legal services for employees who feel they aren’t being compensated properly at work. Below is a sample of various issues they can assist with.

  • Wages theft
  • Owed overtime
  • Back pay
  • Misclassification of workers
  • Unpaid overtime wages
  • Unpaid holiday, sick leave, or vacation time that company policy promised to pay
  • Denial of time off
  • Demotion or firing for reporting wage law violations

What to Look for in a Los Angeles Unpaid Wages & Overtime Lawyer

There are specific qualities a good Los Angeles employment attorney should have. The most important of these traits are explained below.

  • Personal Attention – Each case is unique from every other. For this reason, a good wages attorney will get to know their clients’ personal stories, situations, and concerns so that a tailored legal strategy can be applied to every case.
  • Advocates Aggressively – A successful Los Angeles employment law lawyer will aggressively fight for the earned wages to be paid, fiercely advocating for their client.
  • Confident and Knowledgeable Legal Team – The top employment law firms have attorneys and legal staff who are well-versed in both state and federal wages and hourly pay laws. Not only are these legal professionals up to date on current modifications of employment laws, but they are confident in their knowledge and can explain them to clients in a straightforward and applicable way.
  • Track Record of Successful Unpaid Wages & Overtime Cases – Positive reviews from past clients’ successful California wage cases are a must when employees are selecting an attorney to represent them in their unpaid wages case.

California Employment Laws

When it comes to workers’ pay and compensation for work, as well as other employee rights, Los Angeles, California has specific rules employers must adhere to. When they don’t, it is up to the employee to speak up and defend their rights. In ideal situations, this is done with the help of an experienced Los Angeles unpaid wages & overtime lawyer who understands the laws explicitly and how to apply them to cases involving employment law violations.

Below is a breakdown of some of the most important employment laws in CA.

  • Overtime – California law requires employers to pay hourly workers their regular hourly wage plus half of their regular hourly wage, commonly referred to as time and a half, for all overtime hours worked. Overtime hours are defined as any hours worked over eight hours in one day. For hours worked over 12 hours in one day, the rate of pay should be double the regular hourly pay, according to state law. California further defines overtime as any hours worked over 40 hours in one week or any hours worked on the seventh consecutive day.Additionally, employers must include overtime pay in the pay period in which the overtime was worked. If an employer does not pay or delays paying overtime owed to an employee, it is referred to as wage theft. Employees who have been victims of wage theft should contact an employment attorney because they may be eligible to file an unpaid wages claim.
  • Breaks – California law requires workers to have one half-hour, unpaid and uninterrupted meal break per five hours worked. The law allows this break to be waived if the shift is no longer than six hours. Also, the break must be taken before the end of the fifth working hour.In addition, one paid 10-minute break is required by law for every four hours worked. It must be uninterrupted, and the 10 minutes must be consecutive. At the sixth hour, a second break should be given for the second four hours of the shift. All breaks must be free from job-related duties.
  • Misclassification of Employees – Some types of employees are exempt from the law that requires employers to pay overtime. For instance, workers who are paid a salary do not get overtime. Therefore, some dishonest employers misclassify hourly workers as salaried employees to avoid paying them overtime. Misclassification can also be used to avoid paying workers for their breaks or giving them the time required by law for their breaks. Misclassifying employees is illegal, and any employee who feels their employer is wrongly classifying them should speak to an attorney about the potential for filing a claim against their employer to recover lost wages for unpaid overtime and unpaid breaks.

What Happens When Employers Don’t Follow California Wage Laws?

Some employees don’t give workers paid breaks, and in some instances, employers make workers clock out for breaks when they should be getting paid or pay workers straight time when they should be getting paid overtime. In most cases, it’s not a one-time occurrence and, in fact, goes on for a duration of time or indefinitely. These unpaid wages add up over time and result in thousands of dollars owed to the employee.

State law requires workers to be compensated for their time with appropriate wages, and employers who do not recognize the importance of state-required breaks and obeying wage laws must be penalized for doing so. When employers don’t recognize California overtime laws and other important employment laws, they should be prepared to face the consequences of these violations.

How Can an Employment Attorney Help My Case?

When filing a claim with the state for unpaid wages, an unpaid wages attorney can help the employee understand when to file your claim, whether within two, three, or four years, according to state law.

Additionally, an attorney can help determine which of the six units within the Labor Commissioner’s Office (also called the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE)) to file their claim. They can also aid in researching and gathering the required documents and evidence necessary to get a claim approved.

For example, a Deputy Labor Commissioner is assigned to oversee each claim and will ask for certain proof and supporting documents for the case. Some of the documentation that may be required to submit include the following:

  • Paycheck stubs
  • Timesheets
  • Calendars with work hours documented
  • Employer assets such as property, buildings, equipment, and inventory in the event the employer refuses to pay after the employee’s claim is approved
  • Name of all employers involved in the alleged wage theft accusations (e.g., a worker that is paid by one company to perform services at another place of business, such as a cleaning service)

An employment lawyer can also assist in filing the initial report or claim with the local district office of the Labor Commissioner that handles claims within the city where the job is located. Once filed, the employer will be notified by mail regarding the upcoming settlement conference. Both the employee and the employer must attend. If the employee does not attend, the case may be dismissed. An attorney can help make sure that doesn’t happen.

If the claim isn’t settled at the initial settlement conference, the case will have a scheduled hearing. All parties will receive a Notice of Hearing with the date and time. Both the employer and the employee will testify under oath and be given the opportunity to submit evidence in support of the claim or against it in support of the defense.

The employee is responsible for proving their employer owes them wages. This is when an attorney can really make things easier by questioning defendants and their witnesses, preparing the employee for the hearing in advance with possible questions and appropriate answers, preparing notes, and presenting them to the court.

Hiring a Los Angeles Unpaid Wages & Overtime Lawyer

The process of recovering wages from an employer is complicated and difficult to navigate for those who have never done so before. The California unpaid wages attorneys at California Employment Counsel, APC, have experience working with these departments to get workers’ unpaid wages paid.

Our attorneys can guide employees who have been victims of wage theft through the process of getting their wages paid from beginning to end. We speak Spanish and happily represent all clients, regardless of immigration status, as immigration status does not affect an employee’s ability to recoup unpaid wages and unpaid overtime.

Contact California Employment Counsel, APC, today to speak with a member of our qualified and compassionate legal team and discuss how we can help you with your unpaid wages claim.

Why Speak Up In California

You should never be afraid to assert your
rights as an employee