Employment Law Blog

Filter:  2016 October

Administrative Exemption from Overtime in California

“[U]nder California law, exemptions from statutory mandatory overtime provisions are narrowly construed. Moreover, the assertion of an exemption from the overtime laws is considered to be an affirmative defense, and therefore the employer bears the burden of proving the employee’s exemption.” Ramirez v. Yosemite Water Co. (1999) 20 Cal.4th 785, 794–795 (internal citations omitted). California Labor Code section 510(a) requires employers to pay overtime compensation—that is, to compensate its employees at a higher rate for hours worked over eight in a day or forty in a week. Lab. Code § 515(a) gives the Industrial Welfare Commission (“IWC”) the authority to establish exemptions from the overtime pay requirement. The IWC promulgated Wage Order No. 4, which relates to “professional” and “technical” employees. Cal. Code Regs., tit. 8, § 11040. The wage order establishes four exemptions from the overtime requirement: the (1) executive, (2) administrative, (3) professional, and (4) computer professional exemptions. Id. at subd. 1(A). Pursuant to the Wage Order, in order to be exempt, an employee must perform exempt duties more than fifty-percent of the time.


Non-Compliance in the Discovery Process

Once a party has been ordered to answer discovery or to produce documents more severe sanctions are available for continued refusal. (C.C.P. §§ 2030.290(c), 2030.300(e).) The court may order that designated facts “shall be taken as established” by the party adversely affected by the discovery misuse; or it may prohibit the party who committed such misuse from supporting or opposing designated claims or defenses. (C.C.P. § 2023.030(b).) The court may also prohibit the party (or party-affiliated witness) who disobeyed the court order from introducing designated matters in evidence. (C.C.P § 2023.030(c); Deeter v. Angus (1986) 179 Cal.App.3d 241, 255; Vallbona v. Springer (1996) 43 Cal.App.4th 1525, 1547-1548.) In addition to any other sanction, the court may order the disobedient party or counsel responsible or both to pay the reasonable expenses, including attorney fees, incurred as a result of the failure to obey (including fees on the sanctions motion). (C.C.P. § 2023.030(a).)