Yucca Valley, CA asked in Employment Law for California

Q: I have been getting paid regular rate for my overtime instead of time and a half.

I brought it up to my manager and he is suggesting that i just add it to my time sheet whenever i don't work 80 hours a payroll (bi-weekly). 71.25 hours of Time and a half that i was never paid for.

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3 Lawyer Answers
Neil Pedersen
Neil Pedersen
  • Westminster, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Any work around fix devised by your supervisor requires you to falsely record your time. Not a good idea. It is appropriate that you ask to be paid OT properly. If you are retaliated against for doing so, then that would be unlawful retaliation.

Never falsely record time, even if your employer okays it, or asks you to do it.

If the employer does not pay you properly, or if you are retaliated against for requesting to be paid properly, then locate and consult with an experienced employment law attorney as soon as possible to explore your facts and determine your options. I would suggest you look either on this site, or go to www.cela.org, the home page for the California Employment Lawyers Association, an organization whose members are dedicated to the representation of employees against their employers.

Most employment attorneys who practice this area of law offer a free or low cost consultation in the beginning and then, if the matter has merit and value, will usually agree to work on a contingency basis, meaning you can hire an attorney without paying any money until the matter results in a positive outcome for you. Many advance all the costs of the litigation as well. Do not let fear of fees and costs keep you from finding a good attorney.

Good luck to you.

1 user found this answer helpful

Maya L. Serkova
Maya L. Serkova
  • Orange, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Nonexempt employees in CA should be paid time and one half for all hours over 8 hours per day/ more than 40 hours per week per your 8-hour shift. There is one statutory exception that allows the majority of employees to vote to work 4 ten-hour workdays. If the majority of workers there at the time vote for a 4/10 schedule, then overtime is not earned until the employee works more than 10 hours in a workday, or more than 40 hours in the workweek.

It is never a good idea to report the time incorrectly because it is your responsibility to report all the hours worked correctly. There are other California Labor Codes that your employer possibly violated because your overtime was not paid correctly.

Employer may not retaliate against you for reporting the pay discrepancy.

I suggest you consult an employment law attorney who will further examine your situation and explain your options. Most employment law attorneys in California offer free-of-charge initial consultations and thereafter may take your case on a contingency basis, meaning you do not have to pay attorney’s fees unless and until there is a positive outcome for you. They may also advance either all or partial costs of litigation.

You can look either on this site in the Find a Lawyer section or go to California Employment Lawyers Association (www.cela.org), an organization whose members are committed to representing employees’ rights. Best of luck.


Maya L. Serkova

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Under California law, non-exempt employees must be paid time and a half for any hours worked over 8 hours in a day or 40 hours in a workweek. If you have been paid regular rate for your overtime hours, then your employer may be in violation of California labor laws.

You should first document your unpaid overtime hours and attempt to discuss the matter with your employer or human resources department. If your employer refuses to pay you the proper overtime rate, you may consider filing a wage claim with the California Labor Commissioner's Office or contacting an employment law attorney for assistance.

In general, adding unpaid overtime hours to your time sheet whenever you don't work 80 hours a payroll is not a lawful solution. Your employer is required to pay you time and a half for any overtime hours worked, and failing to do so can result in legal consequences.

If an employee believes they are not being paid the correct overtime rate, they may file a complaint with the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE). The DLSE will investigate the complaint and may take legal action on behalf of the employee if necessary.

Additionally, if an employee files a lawsuit against their employer for unpaid overtime, they may be able to recover the unpaid wages plus interest and penalties. The employee may also be entitled to attorney's fees and costs associated with the lawsuit.

It is important to note that employers in California are prohibited from retaliating against employees for filing a complaint or lawsuit regarding unpaid wages or other labor violations.

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