Is My Wage Doubled When Working Overtime?

California’s wage and hour laws are some of the best in the country for workers. California’s overtime law allows workers to collect 1.5 to 2 times their usual wages during overtime depending on how many hours worked in a period. Neither employers nor employees can waive overtime. Some employers, however, withhold overtime pay from workers illegally. If you believe you should have received double wages for working overtime but never received extra pay, contact a wage & hour violations attorney for your legal options.

California’s Law for Overtime Pay 2020

Under California law, most workers qualify for overtime pay if they work more than 8 hours in a given workday or 40 hours in a workweek. A worker must be 18 or older to qualify for overtime pay unless an employee 16 or 17 years of age does not lawfully have to attend school and no other legal reason exists to prevent the person from working. The law lists several exemptions, or employees who will not qualify for overtime pay based on their professions or positions. If you are a nonexempt qualifying employee, your employer must give you overtime pay.

  • Working over 8 hours overtime payment. You will receive 1.5 times your regular pay rate for every hour you work over 8 hours in a workday, up to 12 hours. If you work 10 hours in one day and usually make $16 per hour, for example, you would make $24 per hour for the last two hours worked.
  • Working over 12 hours overtime payment. You will be eligible for 2 times your regular pay rate for every hour worked in excess of 12 hours in one workday. In the same example, you would make $16 in hours 1 through 8, $24 in hours 9 through 12, and $32 for every hour you work after 12 hours in a workday.
  • Working over 40 hours overtime payment. If you work over 40 hours in any given workweek, you will receive 1.5 times your typical rate of pay for each hour worked over 40. A workweek is six days.
  • Working more than six days in any workweek. Employment that lasts for more than six days in a workweek qualifies you for overtime pay in California. For the first 8 hours worked on the 7th consecutive workday, you will receive 1.5 times the usual rate of pay. For every hour worked in excess of 8 hours on the 7th day, you qualify for double pay.

The two situations in which an employer must lawfully double your wages for overtime in California are if you worked more than 12 hours in a workday or more than 7 full shifts in a workweek. Determine your regular rate of pay by your hourly rate or, if you earn a salary, your annual salary divided by 52 weeks, then that number divided by 40 hours for your hourly pay. If you make a commission, divide your total pay for a workweek (including commissions) by the total number of hours worked that week for your hourly rate.

What to Do If an Employer Is Withholding Overtime Pay

If you qualify for 1.5 or 2 times your usual rate of pay but your employer is withholding it from your checks, take action. California law gives you the right to demand overtime pay. First, calculate the amount of overtime your employer should have given you for the hours worked. Back your claim up with evidence such as your pay stubs and timecards. Take your complaint to your employer for an internal resolution.

If your employer still refuses to pay your overtime wages, file a claim with the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement. The Labor Commissioner’s Office will investigate your case and schedule a settlement conference between you and your employer. If this does not work, you will attend a hearing before an officer who will review both sides and determine whether the employer owes you overtime. You have three years from the date of the overtime violation to file a claim in California. Seek advice from an overtime attorney if you think you have a case.