My last scheduled day was November 5th, I entitled to the Final Wages payout law?

I put in my resignation letter with the final date of November 12th. My manager let me know that they do not need me the last week, so my last scheduled day is November 5th. Am I supposed to be paid in full on November 5th? Or does my employer have until the 12th? The manager claimed that she will still be able to call me into work if needed, but my last shift was on November 5th.

1 answer  |  asked Nov 7, 2016 9:09 PM [EST]  |  applies to California

Answers (1)

Marilynn Mika Spencer
It sounds like your manager was trying to get out of paying you when required. However, if there is a history of you not being scheduled to work but then the employer calls you in to work, perhaps the employer can make a case in its defense. If this is the first time it's ever said such a thing or if it has never before called you in when you were not scheduled, it's excuse is weak.

Here is what is supposed to happen and what your options are:

California law requires employers to pay an employee's final wages at the time the employer ends the employment, or within 72 hours if the employee resigns without giving 72 hours notice. "Final wages" consist of regular pay, overtime pay, accrued and unused vacation pay, commissions that can be calculated, some bonuses and perhaps other components. It does not include unused sick leave.

If the employer ends the employment, the payment must be made at the place of termination.

If the employee quits without giving 72 hours notice AND does not request that final wages be mailed to a particular address, then these payment must be made at the office of the employer within the county where the work was performed.

If an employee previously authorized direct deposit, that authorization is immediately terminated when an employee quits or is discharged, and the employer must make the final wage payment as above UNLESS the employee voluntarily authorized the direct deposit AND the employer makes the payment on time, as described above.

If the employer does not pay as required, there is a penalty against the employer and in favor of the employee: the employee’s pay continues as if the employee were still working, every day until the employer pays in full, up to a maximum of 30 days. The employee is entitled to interest at 10 per cent per annum on the unpaid amount. Also, if the employee must go to court to get his or her pay, then the employee is awarded reasonable attorney’s fees and costs of suit.

There are a few ways to move to collect wages or penalties due:

The Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) is a sub-agency within the California Department of Industrial Relations. Some people refer to the DLSE as the Labor Commissioner. The DLSE enforces California's wage and hour laws, including those pertaining to overtime, rest and meal breaks, and more. The link for information on filing a wage claim is here:

An attorney may be able to get your money more quickly. To find a plaintiffs employment attorney in California, please go to the web site of the California Employment Lawyers Association (CELA). CELA is the largest and most influential bar association in the state for attorneys who represent working people. The web site is Click on "Find a CELA Member" and you can search by location and practice area. Many CELA attorneys represent clients throughout the state.

Finally, you can file a claim in small claims court.

Good luck!

posted by Marilynn Mika Spencer  |  Nov 8, 2016 2:26 PM [EST]

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