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Out-of-state workers in California now eligible for overtime

If you are employed by a California business but live out-of-state, you can now benefit from California's overtime wage laws while you are working within the state.

This has been described by some as a huge victory for the lower paid employees that were being brought in from states with no overtime laws, as well as California residents whose jobs were being adversely affected by domestic outsourcing practices.

The change in the existing law is a result of a unanimous California Supreme Court decision on made last Thursday. The court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs in a class action lawsuit brought against a Redwood Shores business. The company frequently brought in out-of-state employees who were either not protected by overtime laws or only received compensation if the work was performed within their home state.

California's overtime laws state that individuals who are paid by the hour and work more than eight hours in a work day or more than 40 hours during the week are entitled to overtime compensation at 1.5 times their standard hourly rate of pay. It also states that if an employee works overtime on their seventh work day, they are supposed to be paid two times their hourly rate.

A decision such as this one will have positive implications for California residents as well as non-resident temporary employees. California companies will no longer be able to outsource temporary workers who are paid less than their California resident counterparts. One employment law attorney said the ruling will likely trigger more lawsuits against California companies.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "California overtime-pay laws protect nonresidents too, court rules," Maura Dolan, 01 July 2011