What are the Required Paydays in California?

Everyone looks forward to payday. But do you have any rights when you work for an employer who doesn’t stick to a regular payday or pays you infrequently? You bet.

California law not only mandates when employers must pay employees, but it also makes clear that your employer can change your paydays. Once your employer has decided on a pay schedule, they must stick to it.

Pay Schedules & Pay Frequency

Most employers in California must pay employees at least twice per month and on specific days. That’s called a pay schedule. Maybe you’re paid on the 15th day and the last day of each month. Or maybe your employer pays you every other Friday. Either way, this is your pay schedule and your employer can only change it for a legitimate business reason; they must not change it frequently.

However, there are exceptions. If you’re an exempt employee—meaning, you work on salary, are paid over a certain amount, and meet other qualifications—your employer can pay you once per month instead. Most workers in California should be paid at least twice monthly.

California law also mandates when employers must pay you. Your paydays must align with the following:

  • Workers must be paid on or before the 26th calendar day of the month in which they earned wages between the 1st and 15th days of the month
  • Workers must be paid before the 10th day of the month following the month in which they earned wages between the 16th day and last day of that month

In either scenario, workers must be paid within seven days of the end of the pay period. Holidays stretch this period out by allowing your employer to pay you on the next business day. 

We know that exempt employees must be paid at least once per month. They must also be paid on or before the 26th day of the month.

Overtime Pay & Sales Commissions

Overtime pay must also be paid according to the above timelines. In California, we do overtime a little differently than most other states. You’ll get overtime pay (time and a half) for every hour worked in the following situations:

  • All hours worked over eight hours in a single workday
  • All hours worked over 40 hours in a single workweek
  • All hours worked over six days in a single workweek

Under California law, sales commissions are wages. Employers must pay a sales commission when it is earned. This could vary based on the agreement between the employer and employee. In some cases, sales commissions are earned when the client signs the contract. In others, a sales commission isn’t earned until the client pays your employer. 

In either situation, your company must pay you any earned sales commission at least once per month. Many employers align their commission payouts with a regular payroll, and you may get paid more frequently. But they’re only required to pay you once per month.

Speak with a San Diego Employment Lawyer Today

If your employer isn’t paying you correctly or they’re not timely paying your final wages if you’ve resigned or been terminated, you may be able to file a claim against them for additional compensation. 

If your employer changes your paydays or doesn’t pay you regularly, they may violate California law and you may be entitled to compensation. To learn more about your legal options, speak with the experienced San Diego employment lawyers at Ferraro Vega today.

To learn more, call our San Diego law firm at 619-693-7727 or contact us online.