Individual Employees Can Be Liable For Civil Penalties And Attorneys’ Fees For A Company’s Failure To Pay Overtime And/Or Minimum Wages 10-8-18

Bruce’s Summary: This is a key article about a huge change in the California legal landscape, individual personal liability for violation of certain California Labor Codes. In the past the author states for such violations, “under common law, corporate agents acting within the scope of their agency are not personally liable for the corporate employer’s failure to pay its employee’ wages.” Now, it appears that the California Court of Appeal, Fourth District has held that individuals can be liable for civil penalties under two labor code sections outlined in the article.
Those HR Professionals and non-HR Professionals in small organizations, handling wage and hour responsibilities, need to take note that “corporate individuals can be held personally liable for civil penalties underlying the statutes requiring that employees be paid overtime and a minimum wage” and additionally, attorneys’ fees if the employee wins the case.
As a ‘best practices” approach both HR Professionals, non-HR Professionals in small organizations, and even consultants and Employment Agencies whose role is administrating wage and hour issues for an organization need to address the personal liability implementations of this case sooner than later with their corporate or outside counsel. Understanding the dynamics and potential pitfalls affected by this ruling early on is in everyone’s personal interest. “None of the information contained herein should be construed as legal advice, nor are Calvin Associates consultants engaged to offer legal advice. If there is a need for legal advice, please contact and seek the advice of independent legal counsel.”

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