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LawTalk, Attorney
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 37855
Experience:  I have 30 years of experience in the practice of law, including employment law and discrimination law.
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Please explain what wiould need to be paid to an hourly worker

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Please explain what wiould need to be paid to an hourly worker in California:
Say we have someone scheduled to work 8 hours. Now, 3 scenarios:
1. The person comes in, but there's not enough work so we let them go home after 5 hours.
2. The person comes in, but there's not enough work so we let them go home after 2 hours.
3. There's not enough work, so the person is called BEFORE they come in and told to stay home.
In each scenario, how many hours would we have to pay an hourly employee?
Good morning,

I'm Doug, and I'm sorry to hear of the confusion.

CA has what is known as reporting time pay. Under this law, each workday an employee is required to report, and does report, to work, but is not put to work or is furnished with less than half of their usual or scheduled day's work, the employee must be paid for half the usual or scheduled day's work, but in no event for less than two hours nor more than four hours, at his or her regular rate of pay.

So, the answers to your 3 questions are as follows:

1. The person comes in, but there's not enough work so we let them go home after 5 hours.
The employee is entitled to no additional pay. They have already been paid for more than 4 hours work.
2. The person comes in, but there's not enough work so we let them go home after 2 hours. The employee would have to be paid for an additional 2 hours.
3. There's not enough work, so the person is called BEFORE they come in and told to stay home. No payment is due the employee because they were called off before actually arriving for work.

Exceptions to the requirement for reporting time pay found in IWC Orders 1-16, Section 5(C) are as follows:

  1. When operations cannot begin or continue due to threats to employees or property, or when civil authorities recommend that work not begin or continue; or
  2. When public utilities fail to supply electricity, water, or gas, or there is a failure in the public utilities, or sewer system; or
  3. When the interruption of work is caused by an Act of God or other cause not within the employer's control, for example, an earthquake.

Additionally, employers are not obligated pay reporting time pay under the following circumstances:

  1. If the employee is not fit to work.
  2. If the employee has not reported to work on time and is fired or sent home as a disciplinary action.

You may reply back to me using the Continue the Conversation or Reply to Expert link if you have additional questions; and if you do, I ask that you please keep in mind that I do not know what you may already know or with what you need help, unless you tell me.


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I wish you the best in 2013,

Doug
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