Employment Law Blog

Filter:  Labor Code § 203

Overtime, Wage Violations, and Employer Obligations Regarding Disabilities

California Labor Code section 510 requires employers to pay overtime compensation for hours worked over 8 per day and 40 per week. An employer may avoid paying overtime for hours worked over 8 per day by adopting a valid Alternative Workweek Schedule. The procedures for adopting a valid AWS are set forth in Labor Code § 511 and the relevant Industrial Welfare Commission (“IWC”) Wage Order No. 4 at California Code of Regulations, title 8, § 11040, subd. 3(B). Among other things, the law requires an employer to hold a secret ballot election regarding the AWS amongst its employees and to file the results of the election with the State.


“On-Duty” Meal Periods

The Labor Code affords employees a right to off-duty meal breaks, not just permission to eat while on-duty. The applicable Wage Order requires employers to provide every non-exempt employee who works more than five hours with daily “off duty meal periods,” consisting of an uninterrupted 30-minute period during which the employee is relieved of all duty. Wage Order 4-2001, 8 C.C.R. § 11040(11), reads as follows:

“No employer shall employ any person for a work period of more than five (5) hours without a meal period of not less than 30 minutes, except that when a work period of not more than six (6) hours will complete the day’s work the meal period may be waived by mutual consent of the employer and the employee. Unless the employee is relieved of all duty during a 30 minute meal period, the meal period shall be considered an “on duty” meal period and counted as time worked.”