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California Exempt Employee Law

California employees misclassified as exempt

Unfortunately employers sometimes misclassify employees as exempt to avoid paying those workers overtime pay and other benefits entitled to non-exempt employees. Whether employees are intentionally or mistakenly misclassified, employers may owe misclassified employees back-wages and other benefits under the law.

California laws differ from federal exempt employee requirements. Where California law provides greater protections to an employee than the federal requirements, employers must comply with California law.

Exempt Employees under California Labor Law

Under California law, employers must pay employees overtime unless they fall under an exemption, such as certain administrative, executive, or professional jobs.

In California, an “exempt” employee must generally be:

  • Paid a monthly salary equivalent to not less than two times the California minimum wage for full-time employment; and
  • Engaged in work which is primarily intellectual, managerial, or creative, and which requires exercise of discretion and independent judgment.

Employee exemptions under California Law

Learn more about California employee exemptions:

Are you misclassified as exempt?

Think your employer has misclassified you? Free and confidential evaluations are available with an employment lawyer by calling (866) 981-4800 or by filling out the form to the right.