Employment Law Attorneys helping employers navigate the new agricultural overtime rules effective January 1, 2019
As we enter the final quarter of 2018, it is important for employers to start preparing for the employment law changes that 2019 will bring. One critical change that has been widely discussed is the new overtime rules for Agricultural workers will be effective January 1, 2019. Specifically, new Labor Code sections 857-864 cover the following:
- Phasing in for agriculture employees the same overtime requirements that apply to all California hourly employees – e., overtime after 8 hours per day, 40 hours per week, and for the first 8 hours on the seventh consecutive day in a workweek; double time after 12 hours per day, and after 8 hours on the seventh consecutive day in a workweek.
- Eliminated the existing agricultural exemption in Labor Code Section 554(a) relating to one day’s rest in seven worked. As a result, employers of agricultural employees will not be permitted to “cause [their] employees to work more than six days in seven.”
Overtime and Double Time Phase-In Schedule. Currently, California Wage Order No. 14 requires overtime for agriculture employees after 10 hours per day, 60 hours per week. For employers with more than 25 employees, AB 1066 gradually changes California law over a four-year period beginning in 2019.
Labor Code Sections 857-864 were added to the California Labor Code, specifically covering agriculture employees. It requires California Wage Order No. 14 to be updated consistent with the new sections.
Section 860 creates a schedule that phases-in overtime requirements for California agriculture employees over the course of four years, from 2019 to 2022, to match those that apply to all California hourly employees per Labor Code Section 510. Below shows the scheduled phase-in of daily and weekly overtime and double time for agriculture employees:
Employers w/ 26+ Employees
|Daily OT (1.5x)||Weekly OT (1.5x)||Double time (2x)|
|2019||> 9.5 hrs/day||> 55 hrs/wk||N/A|
|2020||> 9 hrs/day||> 50 hrs/wk||N/A|
|2021||> 8.5 hrs/day||> 45 hrs/wk||N/A|
|2022||> 8 hrs/day||> 40 hrs/wk||> 12 hrs/day|
Seventh Consecutive Day in a Workweek Overtime and Double Time. Under new Labor Code Section 862(b), starting January 1, 2019, agricultural employees will be entitled to overtime for the first 8 hours of work on the seventh consecutive day in a workweek, and double time for time worked in excess of 8 hours on the seventh consecutive day in a workweek.
Employers of 25 or fewer employees have an additional three years to comply with the phasing in of these overtime requirements.
Finally, employers should keep in mind that the above rules for overtime only apply to those workers employed in an agricultural occupation. Accordingly, those employees who do not work directly in such an occupation (office personnel, for example), are subject to the standard California overtime rules.
It is important to note that every employment law situation is unique and this update is not a replacement for legal counsel. If you have further questions on the New Agricultural Overtime Rules or would like additional information, please contact Jerry Pearson at firstname.lastname@example.org.