California Human Resource Laws


California Human Resource Laws & Fair Employment Practices

It is important to remember that when operating your own business in Los Angeles, your company must abide by California Human Resource Laws & fair employment practices like minimum wage, overtime, and meal breaks.

The California Labor Commissioner’s Office is responsible for ensuring economic justice in every workplace throughout the state by enforcing labor laws. Reverent Employer Consultants will help you navigate your way through all of California’s human resource laws.

California Human Resource Laws

In the state of California, employers must comply with applicable municipal law obligations affecting the employment relationship, in addition to complying with state and federal requirements. 

Fair Employment Practices

The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibits employers from any terms of discrimination outlined below:

  • Race
  • Religion
  • Color
  • National origin and ancestry
  • Physical or mental disability
    • The employer is obligated to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities.
  • Medical condition
  • Marital status
  • Sexual orientations
  • Gender identity
  • Pregnancy
  • Age
  • Military and veteran status

Child Labor Laws

  • Minors under 16 may not work in occupations involving machines, railroads, dangerous acids, scaffolding, or tobacco.
  • Time restrictions are designed for 16 and 17-year-olds, for 14 and 15-year-olds, and for 12 and 13-year-olds. 
  • All minors must have a permit to work.
  • Employee Handbook templates, required posters, summaries of pending legislation and their implementation dates, along with comprehensive coverage of state employment laws and practical guidance on how to comply must be advertised.

Breastfeeding Breaks

  • A reasonable amount of break time must be provided to accommodate an employee’s need to express breast milk for her infant child.
  • If possible, break times should be concurrent with any other already scheduled break time.
  • Break times that do not match up do not have to be paid for.
  • The employer must try to provide a space close to the employee’s work area to express milk in private.

Equal Pay

The state of California prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, race, and ethnicity in the payment of wages for substantially similar work. Evidence must be proven if the pay is different.

Access to Personnel Files

All employers must allow current and former employees access to their personnel files. The employer has 30 calendar days after a written request to provide the documentation. The employer can charge a fee that is equal to the cost of copying the files. 

Whistleblower Protections

A California employer may not make, adopt, or enforce any rule, regulation, or policy that prevents an employee from being a whistleblower. An employer may not retaliate because an employee is a whistleblower, refuses to participate in an activity that would be considered a violation of state or federal statute, or exercises their rights as a whistleblower in any former employment.

Minimum Wage

The minimum wage in the state of California varies depending on the size of the employer. An employer with 25 or fewer employees must pay employees $11.00 per hour, while an employer with over 26 employees must pay employees $12.00 per hour. The minimum wage in Los Angeles County is changing in the coming months to years. Consult with us to stay up to date and do not only rely upon the above information. 


Any employee that works over 40 hours in a workweek and eight hours in a workday must be paid overtime. An employer is also required to pay overtime to any employees who work seven consecutive days.

The payment must be at a rate of one and one-half times the employee’s regular rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of 40, hours worked beyond eight in a day, and for the first eight hours of work on the seventh consecutive day of work in a workweek.

Employers are required to pay double the employee’s rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of 12 in any workday.

Contact us for further up to date and the most accurate information.

Rest Breaks

A California employer must provide nonexempt employees with a paid 10-minute rest period for each four-hour work period. An employee is entitled to one hour of pay for each workday that the rest break was not provided.

Meal Breaks

A California employer must provide nonexempt employees with no less than a 30-minute meal period if they work more than five hours in a day. A second 30-minute meal period must be provided if the employee works more than 10 hours a day. One hour of pay for each shift that a meal period is not provided is owed to the employee.

Rest & Meal Break Penalties

  • Violation for rest break is 1-hour’s wages each day a break wasn’t provided
  • Violation for meal break is 1-hour’s wages each day a meal break wasn’t provided
  • No rest break or meal break EVER provided is 2-days’ worth of wages for every workday for the past three years

Reverent Employer Consultants understand the importance of abiding by the minimum wage, overtime, and meal breaks expectations. Call us today to let us help you ensure that your business is staying within the requirements.


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