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Tina, Attorney
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 33167
Experience:  JD, 17 years experience & recognized by ABA for excellence in employment law.
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Can an employer pay you a base of min. wage weekly then collect

Customer Question

Can an employer pay you a base of min. wage weekly then collect all weeks past when your commissiion is ewaned? We are California Realtors working part time hours for a timeshare company. They paided us $12.50 hour for the first 45 days. Then we were to move to straight commission, once we earned commissions they repay themselves 100% of our draws from commissions then if there is any balance we then receive it. My understanding is if you are required to hang your realtors license with them and they control your works hour, such as start time,lunch & ending time we should be paid minimum wage. We are paid on a W2 status
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  Tina replied 5 years ago.
Hello and welcome,

Since you receive a W-2, that indicates you are an employee and must be paid at least minimum wage for all hours actually worked.

If the employer is in violation of minimum wage laws, your recourse typically involves filing a wage claim with the state labor board.

Here is a link to their website:

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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
This response doesn't really address the isuue. What I asked is is it legal for an employer to take all of your weekly draws out of a commission check once commissions were earned? We are given $8.00 hr as a draw agaisnt commission suposley how ever we are required to be licensed realtor to preform the sale of timeshare properties so we can only hang our licnese with this employer. The control our start time, lunch time & quiting time. They keep us under 29 hour per week so I was under the impression that we had to be paid minimum wage and then commissions on top of our min. wage but we have to repay our min. wages for weeks before our commissions are paid. Can they do this ??
Expert:  Tina replied 5 years ago.
Yes. They may deduct your draws against commissions paid, but the net payment must be at least minimum wage, not minimum wage plus commissions typically unless you have a contract stating otherwise.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
So I'm to understand that I am paying my own minimum wage out of my commissions for being an inside salesperson ?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
As when I owned a mortgage company I was told I had to pay our loan officers one & a half times the minimum wage to protect myself I wasn't allowed to deduct there pay from commissions, why is this different ???
Expert:  Tina replied 5 years ago.
One and half times minimum wage is required for overtime typically. I cannot speak for how you were previously advised. The law does not require that you be paid more than minimum wage except for overtime hours or if you have a contract stating otherwise.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I am not trying to be hard hear but it seams contary to what I've been told before. That inside sales needs to earn 50% of their income from commission but need to be paid min.wage. So if I have earned more than 50% in commission how are they allowed to deduct the min. wage? Let me give you an example, I earned commissions of $288.00 in August 2011 but in Sept 2011 they deducted my draw of $227.00 since August to Sept. and paid me the current week earning of min. wage. So if I go 6 weeks in draw and earn $980 then get a commssion payment in Oct for $980 is payed and then deducted my draw I wouldn't have made min. wage of $1280 then what ?
Expert:  Tina replied 5 years ago.
I will opt out since I have nothing further to add that I have not already told you.

Take care.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.

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