Legal compliance requirements
Record keeping
Posting and notice requirements
Minimum wage
Rest periods (breaks) and meal periods
Employment of minors
Discrimination laws
Immigration Reform and Control Act
Vacations, holidays and sick leave
Paid Family Leave
Mandated Employer-provided Health Care
  • Federal and state wage and hour laws
  • Sexual harassment
  • Workers¡¯ compensation
  • Immigration Reform and Control Act
  • Child labor laws
  • Time-off provisions
  • Posting and notice requirements
  • Occupational health and safety laws
    The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires employers to keep following records:
  • Employee¡¯s name, home address, occupation, sex, birth date(under 19)
  • Hour and day when workweek begins
  • Total hours worked each workday and each workweek
  • Total daily or weekly straight-time earnings
  • Regular hourly pay rate for any week when overtime is worked
  • Total overtime pay for the workweek
  • Deductions from or additions to wages
  • Total wages paid each pay period
  • Date of payment and pay period covered
    State and federal laws and regulations require that California employers conspicuously display a number of posters where they can be read by employees. In addition, some of the posters must be displayed where they can be read by job applicants.
    The federal minimum wage is $5.15 an hour. The state minimum wage is $6.75 an hour. When state and federal law differ, employer must comply with the more stringent requirement. Therefore California employers must pay a minimum wage of $6.75 per hour.
    Rest periods or breaks must be provided at the rate of 10 consecutive minutes for each four hours worked, and should occur as near as possible to the middle of the work period. A one-half hour meal period must be provided for every five hour work period, unless six hours of work will complete the day¡¯s work and employee voluntarily elects to forego the meal period. Meal periods are not compensable only if they are at least 30 minutes long, if the employee is relieved of all duty, and if the employee is free to leave the premises.
    Employees must receive overtime (1.5 times the hourly wage) for any hours worked over 8 in a single workday. For hours worked beyond 12 in a single workday, employees are entitled to receive double time. Employees must also receive overtime for any work beyond 40 hours in a workweek.
    The FLSA prohibits employment of minors under the age of 14 except in certain limited occupations. With certain limited exceptions, employers must acquire the required work permits before employing a minor. The superintendent of each school district is given the authority for issuing work permits. The total number of hours a minor may work, as well as the permitted spread of hours, varies depending on the age. It is a misdemeanor to require any minor to work more than 8 hours a day. Both state and federal law prohibit minors from working in certain hazardous occupations. State law allows payment of 85% ml the minimum wage to minors and learners.
    When drafting a help wanted advertisement, avoid language indicating limitations or exclusions on the basis or race, color, national origin, religion, sex pregnancy, age, marital status, sexual orientation or disability.
    Employers are required to institute procedures for verifying that an individual is authorized to be employed in the United States. They also establish civil and criminal penalties for knowingly hiring, referring, recruiting or retaining in employment unauthorized aliens when they are identified. Employees must fill out and summit the INS form I-9 to their employer.
    Vacation is a matter of contract between employer and employee. The employer has the right to set the amount of vacation employees will earn each year, or if they will earn any at all. Employers also have the right to determine when vacations may be taken, and for how long. No employer is required to offer employees time off for holidays, nor are employers required to pay for time for holidays granted. Employers are not also required to offer sick leave to their employees.
    SB 1661 allows employees to receive up to 6 weeks of paid leave for the sickness or injury of a family member or domestic partner, or the birth, adoption or foster-care placement of a new child. Employees cannot begin taking paid leave until 7/1/04, and must incur one week of unpaid leave prior to taking their leave under this law. SB 1661 does not require employers to hold open a position for employees on this leave unless required to do so under some other law.
    SB 2 creates a system that requires designated employers to either provide health coverage for their employees or pay a fee to a state run insurance service that will provide coverage. As of 1/1/06 large company with 200 or more employees that cannot provide such proof must contribute to the state¡¯s newly created health care program in an amount sufficient to cover eligible employees and their dependents. As of 1/1/07 employers with 50 or more employees must contribute to state¡¯s program an amount sufficient to cover the eligible employee only. An eligible employee under SB 2 works at least 100 hours per month for the employer and has worked for the employer for at least 3 months. With minimal exceptions, employers can require employees to contribute up to 20% of the employee¡¯s premium. So, employers typically pay no less that 80 percent of the premiums.