With the start of 2019, I’m writing a series of posts covering employment law areas that employers should audit on a routine basis. The first two articles covered hiring practices and records retention practices. This post covers five wage and hour considerations that every California employer should review on a routine basis:
- Are the company’s workweeks and paydays established?
- Are paydays within the applicable time limits after the pay period as required under the law?
- Are employees provided with compliant itemized wage statements?
- Are employees provided a writing setting out their accrued paid sick leave each pay period?
- Is vacation properly documented and tracked?
- Are all deductions from the employee’s pay check legally permitted? (use caution, very few deductions are permitted under CA law)
- Are employees reimbursed for all business expenses, such as uniforms, required cell phone use, work equipment and miles driven for work?
- Are employees provided their final wages according to California requirements? For example, employees terminated must receive their wages (including all accrued and unused vacation) at the time of termination. More information on the timing requirements for final paychecks can be read here.
3. Employee Classifications
- Are employees properly classified as exempt or nonexempt?
- For exempt employees, review their duties and salary to ensure they meet the legal requirements to be an exempt employee.
- Any workers classified as independent contractors, and if so, could they be considered employees?
- Are nonexempt employees properly compensated for all overtime worked?
- Is off-the-clock work prohibited?
- Policy in place?
- Are managers trained about how to recognize it and what disciplinary actions to take if find employees working off-the-clock?
- Does the company’s timekeeping system round employee’s time?
- If so, is the rounding policy compliant with the law?
5. Meal and rest breaks
- Are meal and rest period policies set out in handbook and employees routinely reminded of policies?
- Are meal and rest breaks provided on a timely basis?
- Does the company pay “premium pay” for missed meal and rest breaks? If so, how is this documented on the employee pay stub?
- Do employees record meal breaks?
- Are managers trained on how to administer breaks and what actions to take if employees miss meal or rest breaks?
The next article in this series will addresses end of employment issues. Have a great weekend.