Holiday Pay and the Fourth of July

Jun 30 2016 - Holiday Pay - Gail Cecchettini Whaley

Holiday Pay Independence Day

California employers do not have to pay employees a special premium for work performed on holidays.

Is Independence Day a paid holiday for your employees? Or is the holiday unpaid? California law does not require that an employer provide its employees with paid holidays, that it close its business on any holiday or that employees be given the day off for any particular holiday. It’s really up to your company policy.

Is your company celebrating the Fourth of July by giving your employees a paid holiday?

The Department of Industrial Relations answers this commonly asked question about nonexempt employees working on the Fourth of July on its “Holidays” FAQ page:

Q: Last week, I worked eight hours on the 4th of July holiday, which fell on Wednesday. For the whole week I worked 40 hours. When I got my paycheck this week, I was paid for 40 hours at my straight time rate. Aren’t I entitled to extra pay, of at least double time, for working on a holiday?

A. There is nothing in state law that mandates an employer pay an employee a special premium for work performed on holidays, Saturdays or Sundays, other than the overtime premium required for work in excess of eight hours in a workday or 40 hours in a workweek. Unless your employer has a policy or practice of paying a premium rate for working on a holiday, or you are subject to a collective bargaining or employment agreement that contains such a term, your employer is only required to pay you your regular rate of pay for all the straight time hours worked on the holiday, and the overtime premium required for work in excess of eight hours in a workday or 40 hours in a workweek. Since you did not work over eight hours on the holiday, or more than 40 hours during the workweek, you were paid correctly.

Gail Cecchettini Whaley, CalChamber Employment Law Counsel/Content

CalChamber members can take HRCalifornia’s Holiday Pay Quiz to test their knowledge about pay for religious holidays, paid holidays, holidays for nonexempt workers, federal holidays and other days off that could be considered a holiday. Not a member? See how CalChamber can help you.

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