CALIFORNIA MISCLASSIFIED EMPLOYEES – THE LIES EMPLOYERS TELL EMPLOYEES

If you work in California, then you  know that some (not all!) employers will do just about anything to save themselves money, and not pay employees what they are owed…

One thing that employers can do to employees is to misclassify them.

Some California workers do not receive minimum wages.

Some California workers do not get overtime pay.

Some California workers do not get pay for meals and breaks.

Whether it is on purpose, or accidentally, California employers can treat certain groups of employees as exempt from overtime pay. When they do this, the employer is not obligated to pay that group of employees overtime.

Think about that.

If your employer MISCLASSIFIED you as exempt from overtime, how much money would that cost you? How much money would that cost you every day? Every week? Every pay period? Every year?

Misclassification is workplace fraud, plain and simple,” said US Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez. “It hurts workers by denying them a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work, and it also undermines the competitiveness of businesses that are playing by the rules. At the Labor Department, through vigilant and vigorous enforcement, we are cracking down on irresponsible employers who game the system and cheat their employees — and that’s what they are: not contractors, but employees.”

Thankfully, there are solutions. There is help out there!

HOW CAN THIS HAPPEN?

Because some California employers misclassify some workers as independent contractors instead of as employees. In fact, there are and have been a number of recent cases that address just this issue.

WHAT ARE SOME EXAMPLES OF EMPLOYEE MISCLASSIFICATION?

There are many. A good recent example happened right here in California. Sav-on Drug Stores both managers and assistant sales managers claimed they had been misclassified as exempt from overtime.

These managers performed all the duties an employee would — spent their time working just lie a regular employee would — yet were allegedly still denied overtime pay.

Sometimes misclassification occurs when an employer labels an employee an “Independent Contractor.” There are certain positions that are more likely to be misclassified. Take a look at some of positions that have possibly been wrongfully classified as an “Independent Contractor:”

  • INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY WORKERS
  • COMPUTER-RELATED WORKERS
  • TRANSPORTATION WORKERS
  • FAST-FOOD RESTAURANT MANAGERS
  • RETAIL STORE MANAGERS
  • NAIL SALON EMPLOYEES
  • MESSAGE PARLORS
  • TRUCK DRIVERS
  • DELIVERY DRIVERS
  • MESSENGERS
  • HAIR SALONS
  • BARBER SHOPS
  • VETERINARY CLINICS
  • DENTAL OFFICE WORKERS

QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF…

If you answered yes to any of the following questions, then you may be owed money…

  • HAS YOUR EMPLOYER TOLD YOU THAT YOU ARE AN INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR?
  • DO YOU BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE AN EMPLOYEE RATHER THAN AN INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR?
  • DOES YOUR EMPLOYER DENY MEAL OR REST BREAKS OR REFUSE TO PAY OVER TIME BECAUSE IT CLAIMS YOU ARE AN INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR?

HOW DO WORKERS KNOW WHETHER THEY HAVE BEEN MISCLASSIFIED AS INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS?

The U.S. Department of Labor has published a worksheet that describes the factors that courts generally consider under the Fair Labor Standards Act when determining whether an employment relationship exists. These include:

  • THE EXTENT TO WHICH THE WORK PERFORMED IS AN INTEGRAL PART OF THE EMPLOYER’S BUSINESS;
  • WHETHER THE WORKER’S MANAGERIAL SKILLS AFFECT HIS OR HER OPPORTUNITY FOR PROFIT AND LOSS;
  • THE RELATIVE INVESTMENTS IN FACILITIES AND EQUIPMENT BY THE WORKER AND THE EMPLOYER;
  • THE WORKER’S SKILL AND INITIATIVE;
  • THE PERMANENCY OF THE WORKER’S RELATIONSHIP WITH THE EMPLOYER;
  • THE NATURE AND DEGREE OF CONTROL BY THE EMPLOYER.

CAN EMPLOYEES REALLY FIGHT BACK?

YES!

Read what the US department Of Labor had to say about two recent cases…

Two recent and very significant legal victories for California workers send a strong message to employers nationwide: if you misclassify your employees, you will face the consequences.

National Consolidated Couriers Inc., based in San Leandro but with clients across the country, has agreed to a court judgment requiring it to pay $5 million in back wages and damages to more than 600 drivers it misclassified as independent contractors, having cheated them out of minimum wage and overtime pay.”

In another major win for workers, a federal judge ruled that drivers for Mountain View-based Stanford Yellow Taxi Cab, Inc. were also misclassified. The court’s decision allows the department to continue with litigation forcing the company to pay nearly $3 million in back wages and damages to dozens of drivers.”

MOST CALIFORNIA EMPLOYEES DO NOT KNOW THEIR RIGHTS!

That’s the unfortunate reality. Most California employees think that just because they work in an “at-will” state that they have no rights. Nothing could be further from the truth. Learn more about your employee rights. Lawyers for Employee and Consumer Rights (LFECR) is a leading California employment law firm. With 40+ remote attorneys, LFECR is able to work on behalf of clients anywhere in California. Fired unfairly? Your free consult awaits!

Call 888-625-0959.

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Have a great day!

HOW MUCH DOES MY BOSS OWE ME IF I AM DISCRIMINATED AGAINST?

That is the million dollar question.

If you get fired for any reason, or quite for any reason, you may be owed money!

Fired For Any Reason?

 

HOW MUCH?

That depends on a number of factors and can be best determined by understanding your workplace rights.

FIRST THINGS FIRST…

One of the lest enviable positions an employee can find themselves in is needing the job AND being harassed or discriminated against at work. What is one supposed to do? You need the job. The money. You need to support your family. BUT…You are being treated unfairly.

FEDERAL LAWS PROTECT YOU, BUT MAYBE NOT AS MUCH AS CALIFORNIA LAW

Federal law does prohibit discrimination by employers; however, California law extends protections to certain groups where federal law may not.

Let’s look at some of the federal laws. The federal laws include but are not limited to:

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 – This monumental and historical development in glass/group employment protection outlaws discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin

The Americans with Disabilities Act – The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on disability.

The Equal Pay Act of 1963 – The Equal Pay Act prohibits discrimination based on sex.

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 – You guessed it. The Age Discrimination Act protects against age-related discrimination.

The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 – This act “The act bars the use of genetic information in health insurance and employment: it prohibits group health plans and health insurers from denying coverage to a healthy individual or charging that person higher premiums based solely on a genetic predisposition to developing a disease in the future, and it bars employers from using individuals’ genetic information when making hiring, firing, job placement, or promotion decisions”.

CALIFORNIA LAW GOES EVEN FURTHER TO PROTECT YOU…

Thankfully, California gets even more specific in it’s protection of employees against workplace discrimination:

California’s California Fair Employment and Housing Act of 1959 (FEHA) – This act is a is a powerful California statute used to fight sexual harassment and other forms of unlawful discrimination in employment and housing,

– The California Family Rights Act (CFRA) – Also known as the also known as the Family Temporary Disability Insurance (FTDI) program, is a law enacted in 2002 that extends unemployment disability compensation to cover individuals who take time off work to care for a seriously ill family member or bond with a new minor child.

While California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) protects the people of California from unlawful discrimination in employment, that does not mean that there is no workplace discrimination.

There is workplace discrimination. It happens each and every day.

And you should know your rights.

If you get fired for any reason, or quit for any reason, you may be owed money!

FIRED FOR ANY REASON? CALL 888-625-0959 FOR A FREE CONSULT!

If you have questions right now, Instant Message your question at the LFECR Facebook page. Call Lawyers for Employee and Consumer Rights today…You may be owed money!

IF YOU GOT FIRED LIKE THESE PEOPLE, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

MOST California employees either wait too long to contact an attorney. Or, they never do at all. The consequences can be expensive.

OVERWORKED WAREHOUSE WORKER – A 35-year old warehouse worker in central California works so much that he us unable to take his regular scheduled breaks. He has missed work breaks for years. One day, he complains to his boss. The next day he is fired.

PREGNANT SECRETARY – A 30-year old secretary in Southern California is excited about being 3-months pregnant. One day, she comes into work, sits her boss down, and tell him that she is pregnant. The next day she is fired.

UNDERPAID RESTAURANT DISHWASHER – A 40-year old dishwasher at an upscale restaurant in San Fransisco is constantly working overtime. Some weeks he will work as many as 20 hours of overtime…20! He’s a great employee, and his bosses love him, but they never pay him overtime. One day, just like the Warehouse Worker, he complains about this…The next day he is fired.

 

While none of these three people know each other, they may all share one thing in common.

They may have been all fired unfairly.

And… they my be owed money.

In the case of the Warehouse Worker, it’s very likely his employer engaged in what’s called a Wage and Hour Violation by not allowing him to take breaks. With the Pregnant Secretary, she may be owed money because she was fired due to her pregnancy. With our Dishwasher, he may be owed all of that overtime money the restaurant did not pay him.

WERE YOU RECENTLY FIRED? Do you know your employee rights? You’re not alone. Most Californians employees do not know that wrongfully terminated employees may be owed money.

WHAT’S THE GOOD NEWS? The good news is that there is an easy way for Warehouse Workers, Secretaries, Dishwashers, and most every California employee to learn their rights. If you have been wrongfully terminated, fired, or quit, and think you may have a case, feel free to call 888-739-3092 for a FREE CONSULT!

GIG WORKERS JUST GOT SOME SERIOUS LOVE FROM THE CALIFORNIA SUPREME COURT!

A late April California Supreme Court ruling could reclassify contractors (gig workers) as employees. What could this mean? A whole lot!

A case came before the California Supreme Court. It centered on the drivers for a California-based delivery company. Some of their job requirements involved wearing corporate uniforms, putting corporate logos on their vehicles, paying for vehicle maintenance, gas, and other job-related expenses out of their own pockets. They were, per their employer, “contract” or “gig” workers. Not employees.

The drivers contended that their work fell under full-time employee classification, and should not fall under independent contractor classification.

The case moved through the courts, and ultimately wound up in San Francisco, at the California Supreme Court.

Ultimately, in an 85-page ruling, the seven justices decided that California workers can only be classified as independent contractors by a company if they can show that the worker controls their own work, that their duties go beyond what the business normally engages in, and when the same worker “is customarily engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, or business of the same nature as the work performed for the hiring entity.”

WHO MIGHT THIS AFFECT?

Well, first, it could greatly impact any California employer that has used, “we’re unique, and the normal rules don’t apply to us” as an excuse. That may not be a viable rationale anymore. What’s yet to be seen, and could be a real threat to an entire investment model, is how this may affect entire Gig Economy business models.

More importantly, it could greatly affect California employee rights and have a wide-ranging impact on all contract employees in California. Why? Because it may require employers to provide benefit and a minimum wage for gig workers

Stay tuned.

Our employee advocates certainly will.