URGENT CA: Why Wage Theft is So Critical in California

Effective January 1, 2024, California has published a new Wage Theft Notice, often called the Notice to Employee at Time of Hire (and found in the Guardian HR Forms Library), which has been updated to reflect both the new California Sick Leave law, as well as non-exempt employee’s pay rates, designated paydays, appliable overtime rates, and other wage information. What has not changed is that this notice is to be presented at the time of hire, and within 7 days of a wage change for non-exempt employees.  This form is often also referred to as referencing California Labor Code 2810.5.

But why is this so important to share with employees? As a recent court case proved, employers who commit wage theft – often simply defined as not paying employees for hours worked – can be liable for potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars of back-owed wages and penalties.

In 2023, the California Labor Commission formally announced a settlement for employees of maintenance and janitorial labor contractors for the Cheesecake Factory, who had been accused of not paying said employees for hours worked, requiring up to as many as 10 hours of overtime per week for shifts that lasted into the morning. Though the Cheesecake Factory contracted a company to clean its restaurants, and that company in turn contracted with another company to supply the workers, all parties involved were named in the suit and ultimately settled jointly.

This should be a reminder to all employers that all hours worked by non-exempt employees must be on the clock and paid per California state laws.

Are you certain your time clocks and timekeeping systems accurately record the hours of your non-exempt employees? Please take time to review and ensure this practice is meeting state law. Your Dedicated HR Manager with Guardian HR is more than happy to discuss any issues with overtime, timekeeping, and any other wage claim issue you may have.

If you wish to become a client of GHR and get access to all our great resources, including your own HR Manager and our team of employment attorneys, please contact us at sales@guardian-hr.com or call us at 888.373.4724.