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Your Legal Corner - Client Alert Blog

In 2014, California Minimum Wage Violations May Lead to Greater Penalties

Written By: Melissa C. Marsh, Esq., California Attorney, October 2013 Add to Favorites
Existing law sets a minimum wage for all employees in California, with limited exceptions, and prohibits employers, unless specified, from paying less than the state minimum wage (presently $8 per hour, $9 as of Jan 1, 2014). Under existing law, if a California employer fails to pay the minimum wage, without just cause, the employee may file a claim and receive a judgment, for: (1) the unpaid balance of the full amount of the minimum wage, (2) liquidated damages in an amount equal to the wages unlawfully unpaid, (3) interest at a rate of 10% thereon, plus (4) reasonable attorney’s fees and costs of suit. (See, Labor Code 1194, 1194.2 and Civil Code 3289).

Effective January 1, 2014, AB 442 amends Labor Code sections 1194.2 and 1197.1, to make it clear that the civil penalties available under Labor Code Section 1197.1 are in addition to any awarded liquidated damages.

AB 442 further provides that if the California Labor Commissioner determines in a field investigation that the minimum wage laws were violated, the Labor Commissioner will be authorized not only to issue and enforce a citation to recover the unpaid wages on behalf of the workers, but also liquidated damages in an amount equal to the underpaid wages and a civil penalty. (Labor Code 1197.1)


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Disclaimer: The information presented on this web site was prepared by Melissa C. Marsh for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. The information provided in my articles and alerts should not be relied upon, or used as a substitute for professional legal advice from an attorney you retain to advise or represent you. Your use of this Internet site does not create an attorney- client relationship. Transmission of this article is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. All uses of the contents of this site, other than personal uses, are prohibited. You may print or email a copy of any information posted on this web site for your own personal, non-commercial, use, but you may not publish any of the articles or posts on this web site without the Express Written Permission of Melissa C. Marsh.


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Located in Los Angeles, California, the Law Office of Melissa C. Marsh handles business law and corporation law matters as a lawyer for clients throughout Los Angeles including Burbank, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, Valley Village, North Hollywood, Woodland Hills, Hollywood, West LA as well as Riverside County, San Fernando, Ventura County, and Santa Clarita. Attorney Melissa C. Marsh has considerable experience handling business matters both nationally and internationally. We routinely assist our clients with incorporation, forming a California corporation, forming a California llc, partnership, annual minutes, shareholder meetings, director meetings, getting a taxpayer ID number (EIN), buying a business, selling a business, commercial lease review, employee disputes, independent contractors, construction, and personal matters such as preparing a will, living trust, power of attorney, health care directive, and more.