California Small Business Owner Wake-Up Call: Comply or Risk Paying Big $$$$

By Janice Knight (SPHR)- Guest Blogger

A May 2013 California Labor Commissioner Report alerts California business owners to most significant increases in Wage and Hour violation awards and penalties in years.  A review of this report is eye opening.  DLSE_Report 2013

Wage Theft Enforcement Adds New Urgency

Several enforcement agencies in California are now collaborating and have stepped up their efforts to go after employers who they believe are guilty of “Wage Theft”.  Employers are guilty of wage theft for failing to comply with the many wage and hour laws on the books.  The term became more widely known with the passage in January of 2013 of the Wage Theft Protection Act of 2011, which gives greater protection to workers, and makes changes in the way workers are notified of basic employment information.

Knowledge is Power PhotoKnowledge is power, specifically when it applies to understanding and complying with California’s rather stringent and often confusing wage and hour laws.  Inaccurate information abounds on the internet, often causing confusion with both employees and employers.  Knowing where to go to find accurate information is crucial to employers avoiding expensive penalties, back wages and other adverse awards, not to mention minimizing the number of disgruntled employees.

Knowing what to do with this information is even more important and may require the help of an expert.  A human resources consultant might be useful for clarification, policies and practices, while an employment attorney might be necessary to correct unlawful practices, negotiate with enforcement agencies and minimize future legal risks.   Employers can reduce the cost of experts by doing their basic homework first. [Read more…]