Many people who work remotely in California wonder if the same wage and hour laws apply to them that apply to on-site employees. The answer is yes. But you must be a non-exempt employee. You have the right to be paid at least minimum wage, overtime pay rates for overtime, and standard meals and rest breaks. In the event that your employee does not pay the correct amount or does not provide breaks, you may be owed a significant refund.
As a California employee, you should know your rights. Unfortunately, your employer may ignore the rights of remote employees (which have recently changed a lot with the increase in remote work). Here’s a little guide to the most important things to understand about remote work in California:
Get paid for all hours worked and have adequate breaks and meals.
California wage laws define “hours worked” as “the time during which an employee is subject to the control of an employer,” whether or not the employee is required to work. Other than that, it is important to accurately track all hours worked to see if an employee is entitled to overtime pay.
Workers must receive overtime benefits when they work more than 40 hours a week or more than 8 hours a day.
Nonexempt California workers must receive a 10 minute paid break for every 4 hours worked. In addition, employees must also receive a thirty-minute unpaid meal break for every 5 hours worked.
Business expense reimbursement
The employer is responsible for providing the tools, uniform, and other items the employee needs to do the job. According to California Law, if the employer does not provide these items and the employee has to purchase them himself, the employer has to reimburse the employee for any “necessary expenses or losses incurred by the employee” while performing the job. This also applies to remote employees and the use of covered phones, the Internet, office supplies, furniture, etc.