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Familiarize yourself with California's wage and hour laws

When you accept a job offer, you are counting on the employer to pay you and do things in accordance with the applicable laws. The employer is expecting you to perform the job duties for which you are hired.

There are some employers who might try to skirt the wage and hour laws of this state. This is one of the reasons why it is imperative that all workers know these laws.

Pay is a big area where some employers might try to bend the rules. The laws here are pretty straightforward. Minimum wage is currently $10 to $10.50 for the entire state, although some cities do have higher minimum wage rates. Employers with 25 or fewer employees can pay $10 per hour and employers with 26 or more must pay at least $10.50 per hour.

Overtime pay at 1.5 times the normal salary is required for work in excess of 40 hours per work week or eight hours per work day. A person who works more than 12 hours per day must be paid at two times their normal pay rate.

Even meals and breaks are covered by law. An employee must be given a 10-minute rest period for every four hours of work. This rest period is a paid break. Employees must also get an unpaid 30-minute break if they work more than five consecutive hours. This meal break is for six hours of continuous work for some people in the motion picture industry.

When you don't think your employer is following these laws, you can take action. Make sure that you learn about your rights and the ways that you can take action.

Source: FindLaw, "California Wage and Hour Laws," accessed Oct. 19, 2017

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