Unpaid Overtime Attorney in Los Angeles

Overtime is an increased hourly rate that is earned by workers when they exceed the daily or weekly limit for hours worked as established by the federal government. It is the right of every employee to be paid in accordance with those regulations when they have worked beyond those limits. If you believe that you have earned overtime pay but your employer has ignored their responsibility to uphold that pay rate, then it is time to pursue legal action with an experienced overtime pay lawyer in Los Angeles. Both state and federal regulations guarantee the right to overtime pay in the state of California. Call Mesriani Law Group today for a free consultation.

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Sean Fazaeli

"Mr. Mesriani is an excellent lawyer. I am very thankful and very happy with everything he and his staff had done for me. He treated me like a friend, but at the same time he was very professional and helped me with all my legal concerns amazingly. If ever I will need any legal assistance again, I will definitely go to him. I highly recommend him. Again, thank you very much Mr. Mesriani and may God bless you."

Can I Sue For Unpaid Overtime in California?

The only time an employer can avoid overtime pay for hours worked that exceed 8 hours a day or 40 hours a week is when an employee is classified as exempt in the state of California. If an hourly employee is not exempt, their hourly rate must match the overtime rate as stated by California law, otherwise the employer could be looking at a serious civil suit in addition to punitive fines levied by the state.

How Mesriani Law Group Can Help with Unpaid Overtime

The experienced legal team at Mesriani Law Group will help you build your case, so it has the best chances of success. Using evidence collected during the discovery phase, our lawyers can help determine how much unpaid overtime is owed and how to best approach collecting that pay. Our team can pursue legal action and fight for your right to back pay. In these instances, our team will:

  • Inform your employer of their wage violation and the amount due
  • Decide to move forward with the claim as a class action or individual claim
  • Provide mediation between both parties
  • Perform discovery where documents and testimonials are secured as evidence
  • If settlement isn’t obtained, your case against your employer will be taken to trial in a civil suit

If you are owed overtime pay, consult with one of Mesriani Law Group’s experienced unpaid overtime attorneys to ensure that you are provided with the back pay you deserve.

Why You Should Choose Mesriani Overtime Pay Lawyers

If you or someone you love has denied overtime pay, you want an experienced Los Angeles employment attorney who has a history of successfully handling overtime claims. Mesriani Law Group’s Los Angeles overtime pay attorneys guarantee exceptional legal service to our clients and have the successful results to prove it.

Why you should choose Mesriani Law Group for your overtime claim:

No Win No Fee Policy

Mesriani Law Group offers a No Win No Fee guarantee to all our clients, meaning if we don’t win your case you don’t have to pay us anything.

Proven Track Record

Since its establishment in 1996, Mesriani Law Group continues to be among California’s most trusted law firms. We have recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients who have their employment rights violated.

Experienced Overtime Attorneys

Rodney Mesriani and his team of dedicated lawyers have over two decades of experience and outstanding expertise in protecting employees right to overtime pay.

Satisfied Clientele

Mesriani Law Group represents clients from different parts of Southern California and has received the highest ratings by our clients as seen in Yelp, Avvo, and Google.

Multilingual Staff

Our diverse team of attorneys and paralegals also speak Farsi, Spanish, and Tagalog. Effective communication is a big part of the exceptional customer service we provide our clients.

Available 24/7

We are available 24/7 for a phone consultation and if you are not able to visit our office, we are amenable to meet you at your convenience.

Our Los Angeles overtime lawyers will fight aggressively to ensure that you get the maximum compensation and justice you deserve. Contact our offices today for your free consultation.

What is Overtime Pay?

Overtime pay is a pay rate that is required by law that rewards employees for working over the allowed state and federal mandated hourly limits. This means that hourly employees are typically paid “time and a half” (a 50% premium) for any hours over 8 hours in one day or 40 hours in one week. In some instances of excessive hours, a “double time” rate (100% premium) will be applied. In the state of California, overtime pay is the responsibility of the employer to pay so it can not be taken from tip or gratuity pools. This means that overtime pay will need to be paid in addition to tips and gratuities earned while working.

Overtime Pay Laws in California

Federal and California state overtime laws dictate that employers must follow the following pay scale for the number of hours that exceed their daily and weekly limits. The federal Fair Labor Standards Act states that non-exempt employees will be paid overtime in the following circumstances:

  • Any hours worked that exceed 40 hours a week will require time and a half pay.
  • Any hours worked that exceed 8 hours a day will require time and a half pay.
  • Any hours worked that exceed 12 hours a day will require double time pay.

California state wage laws also include overtime pay for the following:

  • Any hours that are worked on the 7th day straight and beyond without a full day off will also qualify for overtime pay.

Under California law, full time, part time, some salaried, and wage-based employees have earned the statutory right to receive overtime pay. If these pay rates are not met for hours that exceed the limits, employers will receive significant penalties and consequences. The enforcement of wage and labor violations is the responsibility of the Department of Labor (DOL) which helps protect the rights of employees.

Who Qualifies for Overtime Pay?

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) covers most employers that generate at least $500,000 in annual sales. Where the FLSA stops, California overtime laws pick up the slack. Companies that are smaller than the federal minimum or family owned and operated will be covered by California’s stricter regulations.

Employment Classification & Overtime

The primary consideration that is considered when accounting for overtime is employment status. Typically, employees in California fall under either:

  • Non-exempt: Employers are obligated to pay non-exempt employees overtime wages for hours that were worked beyond the full-time hours.
  • Exempt: Employees that are exempt are usually paid by time, commission, or on a piece rate basis and do not qualify for overtime pay. This classification also applies to independent contractors.

Who is Exempt from Overtime?

Even with strict, overtime pay rules, there are several employee classifications that may not qualify for overtime benefits. Those that are salaried generally fall within these parameters. Their exemption from overtime wages is usually based on the following:

  • They perform executive, administrative, or professional duties that account for over 50% of their work.
  • They are autonomous and routinely make decisions and exercise their own judgement at work.
  • Their salary is twice the California minimum wage for a full-time role at 40 hours a week.

This typically means that most “white collar” jobs are exempt from overtime rules if they are paid at a rate that falls above the 2x minimum wage for full time work standard. However, there are a few other classifications that are not eligible to receive overtime benefits. Those include:

  • Independent contractors
  • Volunteers
  • Seasonal workers
  • Small farm workers
  • Criminal investigators
  • Outside sales
  • Technology and computer professionals

Independent Contractor Status & Overtime

Independent contractors are not classified as employees which allows employers to dodge their overtime responsibilities. If you are an independent contractor, you choose when you work so you are under no obligation to follow company guidelines on when to clock in and out. Employers will often misclassify employees in attempts to avoid their overtime pay responsibility. Generally, under California law, a worker is classified as an employee unless the employer has made it clear that the employee was hired on as an independent contractor.

Examples of When You Can Sue for Overtime Pay

When employers fail to adhere to federally and state mandated wage laws, employees are entitled to file a lawsuit to recoup lost pay plus interest, no matter how much is owed. Anytime an employer fails to pay an appropriate overtime wage for hours worked over:

  • 8 hours a day
  • 40 hours a week
  • 6 straight days in a row

California laws also protect employees and may allow further litigation against employers when they:

  • Fail to pay appropriate overtime rate
  • Require employees to work without meal breaks
  • Require employees to participate in work off the clock
  • Misclassify an employee as an independent contractor or exempt employee
  • Prohibit overtime but provide too much work to complete reasonably within a full-time schedule
  • Require employees to take work home to complete
  • Fail to compensate for travel time, time spent putting on job related equipment, and time spent going through company security
  • Modify time sheets to avoid overtime hours
  • Fail to pay commissions or gratuities in accordance with overtime hours worked

In these instances, an employee is entitled to file a lawsuit claiming unpaid overtime wages.

How to File an Overtime Pay Dispute Against Your Employer

If an employee has been denied overtime, they may file a complaint with the Wage and Hour Division of the Department of Labor. This can be done by mail, in person, or by using a 3rd party. Using a 3rd party is typically recommended when damages are significant to ensure that the right steps are taken to maximize the chances of a successful complaint and lawsuit. An overtime lawyer will ensure that the complaint is filed properly with the correct information:

  • Employee’s personal information including name, address, & phone number
  • Employer’s business information including name, address, phone number, & type of business
  • Job title and duties
  • Payment history including rate and payment method
  • Overtime violation information including dates and descriptions

Once a complaint is filed, the WHD will investigate the claim and help provide recovery for owed back wages. If owed overtime wages are significant, a separate lawsuit can be filed with the California Superior Court. This is something else that will require the assistance of an experienced unpaid overtime attorney to ensure that the proper evidence is collected and submitted. It is important to remember that employers are prohibited from taking retaliatory actions against an employee for filing a pay dispute or complaint. This protects employees from harassment and wrongful termination.

What Documentation Do You Need to Win an Overtime Lawsuit?

The evidence that your overtime lawyer will need to collect to ensure the best chance of a successful lawsuit include:

  • Paychecks
  • Time sheets
  • Work schedules
  • Offer letter / hiring agreement
  • Employee handbook / guidelines
  • Emails and texts from your employer, supervisor, or coworkers regarding hours worked
  • Previous complaints made about unpaid overtime wages
  • Witness information and testimonials

Having this information will help an experienced overtime lawyer build a successful case and maybe even determine if there is potential for a class action claim. Class action claims can take an individual overtime lawsuit and add additional violations from other employees to build a larger case against an employer.

What Damages Can You Receive from an Unpaid Overtime Lawsuit?

When an overtime lawsuit is successful, the total compensation awarded will typically include:

  • The full amount of unpaid overtime wages
  • The interest that amount would have generated
  • Any court and attorney fees

If federal labor laws were violated, and the violation was due to malicious intent rather than a good faith error, damages may be doubled. Having a Los Angeles overtime attorney review your case will determine the most likely outcome and maximize the chances of a successful lawsuit.

Calculating Overtime

Overtime calculations for hourly employees are very easy to figure out:

Time and a half pay is the equivalent of 150% of an employee’s standard pay. If an employee makes $15 per hour, any hours worked over 8 hours a day, 40 hours a week, or over 6 days in a row will result in the rate of $22.50 per hour.

Time and a half example: $15 x 150% = $22.50

Double time pay is the equivalent of 200% of an employee’s standard pay. If an employee makes $15 per hour, any hours worked over 12 hours a day will result in the rate of $30.00 per hour.

Double time example: $15 x 200% = $30.00

Overtime calculations for salaried employees uses the same formulas but their hourly rate needs to be determined. Assuming a $45,000 annual salary, the overtime calculations would look like:

  • $45,000 annual salary / 52 weeks = $865.38 / week
  • $865.38 weekly salary / 40-hour full time schedule = $21.63 / hour

Once the hourly rate has been determined, the time and a half- and double-time formulas can be applied to determine the appropriate overtime rate.

Calculating Commissions Based on Overtime

In addition to just the base hourly overtime wages, any commissions, benefits, and gratuities will also need to be calculated into the amount owed. If an employee receives their hourly rate plus the promise of additional income through gratuity pools, production incentives, or sales commissions, then those amounts earned while working will also need to be paid out. In the instance of gratuity pools and production incentives, a proportionate amount accounting for time worked will need to be included in a claim.

Contact a Mesriani Law Group Overtime Attorney

If you have been denied overtime pay for hours worked that exceed the hourly limits set out by local and federal law, then you likely have a viable overtime lawsuit on your hands. Enlisting the help of an experienced Mesriani overtime lawyer will help maximize the chances that you are able to recover those lost wages. We will provide the guidance you need while taking care of the heavy lifting that will be needed when going after your employer for wages owed. Call today to schedule a consultation if you have been denied overtime wages.


Overtime Pay Lawyer FAQs

Is an employee entitled to overtime if it was not authorized by their employer?

California requires that employers pay overtime and double time regardless of if it is authorized or not. In any circumstance overtime is not authorized, it is the responsibility of the employer to either ensure that enough people are working to complete the job or to ensure that the amount of work assigned every day does not exceed the 8 hour limit. If the employer fails to do this, and an employee is forced to work longer than 8 hours, overtime is owed regardless of authorization.

What should I do if my employer refuses to pay overtime?

If your employer refuses to pay overtime for hours worked that exceed state and federal limits, they may have an individual claim against them. However, if an employer denied overtime all together, they likely have a class action lawsuit on their hands. Generally, if overtime being denied is company policy, there is usually more than one employee that has a viable claim. In these instances, those employees can band together and file a class action lawsuit.

Kamran Hayempour

"The Mesriani Law Group’s attorneys and paralegals have been very professional in handling our cases. We were constantly updated with everything that is going on. They have been very helpful in answering our questions and attending to all our legal concerns. They achieved great results for us, case after case (company and personal). I am very satidfied and I highly recommend them.."

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