4 Day, 10 Hour Per Day Workweek

Under existing labor laws, California Alternative Workweek Schedule is considered legal as long as it meets the legal process. A 4-day, 10-hours per day workweek reduces the need for employers to pay daily overtime work for employees who do not usually serve the prescribed 40 hours per week. This schedule is beneficial to both employers and employees. For employees, they may benefit from the reduced cost of transportation and the flexibility of the alternative work schedule compared with the regular 5-day, 8-hours per day workweek. On other hand, employers can save from reduced energy costs and overtime pay.
For a California alternative workweek schedule to be considered legal, California wage law requires the employer to prove that majority of the affected employees, mostly hourly-wage employees, are in favor of the proposed work schedule. The state labor code, particularly Section 511, requires the employer to provide a menu of alternative schedules which employees will have to vote on. Normally, two of the most common workweek schedules include the traditional 5-day, 40-hours per week and the 4-day, 40 hours per week. However, employers can propose other schemes they deem preferential to their circumstances.
The employer’s proposed workweek schedule must receive two-third of the votes of affected employees. The election must be conducted at the workplace in a secret balloting system. At least two weeks before the vote, the employer must release a written memorandum and hold a forum regarding the effects of the proposed workweek on the employees’ work hours, hourly rates, overtime pay and other benefits. All affected employees must be duly informed of the planned adjustments in workweek.
The employer must report the results of election to the state Division of Labor Statistics & Research (DLSR) within 30 days after the vote is completed. However, employers cannot implement the new workweek schedule immediately. The new schedule will take effect only after 30 days of the announcement of the final result of the election. Meanwhile, affected employees may repeal a duly instituted California alternative workweek schedule provided that the same process is followed. However, there are special circumstances that allow the employers to rescind an alternative workweek schedule even without an election. In such case, the employer is obligated to inform all employees.
Although alternative workweek schedule are considered legal, employers are obliged to make necessary adjustments for their employees who cannot comply with the alternative schedule. Additionally, companies enforcing a new workweek schedule must explore possible alternatives when the religious beliefs of the employee are in conflict with the proposed schedule.
One of the most common concerns of employees with regards to California alternative workweek schedule is the wage rate. Basically, the California Labor Code Section 511 protects employees from unjust reduction of hourly wage rate due to a revision in the workweek schedule. Moreover, employees retain their overtime pay benefits for all hours served beyond the modified workweek schedule.
While provisions of the law ensure that employees remain well compensated despite adjustments in work schedule, there are disputes that arise due to California alternative workweek schedule. If for any reason you feel that workweek schedule is imposed against your will or your work unit’s collective decision, a California Wage Law Attorney will definitely be of great help. Their expertise in the field can guide you towards the best legal recourse and ensure that the settlement will be accorded at your best interest. If you believe that you were not given a choice in the Alternative Workweek Schedule, or the schedule has not been approved by the California Labor Commission, feel free to contact California Wage Law Attorney. You may be due considerable overtime wages.

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