June 26, 2017
California Supreme Court Ruling on Day of Rest Requirements (“the Mendoza decision”)
Background on the Final Act:
The Mendoza decision provides clarification on existing California law about when employers must pay 7th day OT to employees. This case clarifies that employees are entitled to 1 day of rest in each workweek as long as the employee works over 6 hours on any day during the workweek. Before the Mendoza decision, it was largely understood that an employee was entitled to 1 day of rest for any 7th consecutive day of work, regardless of workweek.
Details of Change:
Employees are entitled to one day of rest in each workweek, as long as the employee works over 6 hours on any day during the workweek. If the employee does not receive a day of rest, the employee is entitled to 7thday OT.**
The Mendoza decision makes it clear that the workweek controls when the 7th day overtime is due, not whether the employee worked 7 consecutive days in a row. If an employee works more than 6 consecutive days in a row that stretch across more than one workweek, the 7th day OT is not due as long as at least 1 day of rest is provided in each workweek.
Employees are not entitled to receive a day of rest or 7th day OT if they meet both of the following criteria:
The employee worked 30 or fewer hours in the workweek; and
The employee worked 6 or fewer hours every day in the workweek
When the nature of the employment reasonably requires that the employee work 7 or more consecutive days, the employer may accumulate days of rest equivalent to 1 day in 7 on a monthly basis, but the employer is still required to pay any premium pay due to the employee.
An employee may choose not to take a day of rest, as long as they are aware of their right to take a day of rest. Note that if an employee chooses to waive their day of rest in a workweek, they must still receive 7th day OT for that time worked.
An employer may not require an employee to waive a day of rest and may not conceal the employee’s right to take a day of rest from the employee.
**If the employee does not receive a rest day during the workweek, the employee is entitled to 1.5 times their regular rate of pay for the first 8 hours of work and 2.0 times their regular rate of pay for more than 8 hours on the last day in the workweek.
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