Unpaid Wages

Are you working without receiving overtime pay? Are you working without receiving uninterrupted 30 minute lunch breaks? Are you working without getting 10 min breaks for every few hours? Has your employer retaliated against you for demanding proper overtime pay, lunch and rest breaks?

Employers generally must pay employees overtime (time and a half) for all hours worked over eight hours in the workday and over 40 hours in the work week.   Employers also must provide employees lawful meal and rest breaks or otherwise compensate employees for forfeiting their lawful breaks.

At California Employment Legal Group, we specialize in wage and hour claims, assisting you in recovering the applicable pay, penalties, and fees, for such wage and hour violations.

The law regarding overtime is simple: a non-exempt employee must be paid time-and-a-half for all hours worked over eight hours in any workday and over 40 hours in a workweek.

Some companies routinely violate wage-and-hour laws, by making non-exempt employees work through lunch breaks, take unpaid rest breaks, or open or close the business on unpaid time. Others classify certain workers as managerial and therefore treat them as “exempt” from wage-and-hour laws, even when these employees are not really managers.

If you have been asked to work off-the-clock, or if you have been mistakenly classified as an exempt employee, you may be entitled to compensation for your unpaid overtime and benefits.

Unpaid/Underpaid Wages

Employers are required to pay the amount they agreed to pay for the work that an employee performs. That requirement protects all California employees, whether they receive hourly pay, a salary, or a commission.

Unpaid Commissions

Sales commissions must be calculated according to the employer’s agreement with the employee. When employers fail to pay the full commission pursuant to that agreement, employees are entitled to bring a wage claim to collect the unpaid commission.

Unpaid Overtime

Employers must pay overtime compensation to nonexempt employees for all hours they work in excess of 8 hours per day or 40 hours per week. California law also requires the payment of overtime when an employee works seven consecutive days in a workweek.

Meal and Rest Breaks

Employers that force a nonexempt employee to work (or to remain at a job site) during required meal and rest breaks may owe the employee “premium pay.”

On-Call, Standby, and Travel Time

California employers must pay the hourly wages of nonexempt employees during times that they are under the employer’s control. Employers that fail to pay required compensation for on-call, standby, or travel time are liable for back pay and other penalties.

Improper Classification of Exempt Employees

Certain categories of employees are exempt from particular wage and hour laws. When an employer improperly classifies an employee as exempt, the employee may be denied wages and other benefits to which the employee is entitled, including overtime.

Misclassification as Independent Contractors

Employers sometimes deny wages and benefits (such as FICA contributions) to employees by improperly claiming that they are independent contractors rather than employees.

False Record Keeping

State and federal laws require employers to keep records of, among other things, the time that nonexempt employees work each day. Employers that falsify or fail to keep those records (as well as other required payroll records) may be liable to employees for penalties in addition to back pay.


When an employer pays some employees less than others for the same work, and the pay differential is based on an impermissible factor (such as sex, race, or disability), the employee may be entitled to compensation that includes the pay the employee should have received.

Overtime and Unpaid Wage Recovery Assistance

The California Employment Legal Group pursues unpaid and underpaid wage and commission claims and other wage law violations to help employees recover just compensation. We work closely with our clients to devise the best legal strategy for maximizing their recovery while resolving the dispute efficiently and effectively.

Our law firm has successfully litigated numerous wage and hour cases. If your case has merit, we are ready and willing to file a suit for you at our expense. We’re here to help you and your co-workers get the money you earned and deserve.

Asking for the overtime pay you deserve is not asking for special treatment. Under California and federal laws, you and your co-workers are entitled to overtime pay and benefits provided that you meet certain criteria. Our attorneys will undertake a comprehensive investigation of your situation. When we take your case, we will take it to win — and help you get the money you deserve.

If you believe that you are due compensation under the applicable wage and hour laws, call us now for a free consultation. Se habla español.