How Many Days in a Row Can You Work in California?

If your employer wants to schedule you to work more than the standard eight hours a day for five days a week, you might have a lot of questions.

A major question you might have is, How many days in a row can you work in California?

The simple answer is, you can work seven days a week, but your employer needs to pay you extra.

If you work seven days a week for your employer, make sure they respect your rights and pay you adequately. 

Many California Employees Are Entitled to Overtime Pay for Their Seventh Workday

California’s overtime laws are pretty favorable to employees compared to other states.

Generally, you receive overtime if you work more than eight hours in a workday or 40 hours in a workweek.

Depending on how many hours you work, you should receive one and one-half or two times your regular pay rate.

You can read more about calculating overtime pay in our article on Overtime Pay in California. Your entitlement to overtime pay also depends on how many consecutive days you work in a seven-day workweek. 

When you work seven days in a row, your employer must pay you an overtime rate. Your employer must pay one and one-half times your regular pay rate for the first eight hours you work on your seventh workday.

When you work more than eight hours on your seventh workday, your employer must pay you twice your regular pay rate for time worked beyond the first eight hours. 

Your employer also must pay you an increased rate if you work unauthorized overtime. However, those unauthorized hours might be the last hours you work for your employer.

While your employer has to pay you for working unauthorized overtime hours, they can also discipline you for working unauthorized hours. 

Your Employer Can Require You to Work Overtime Hours, But They Can’t Require You to Work Seven Consecutive Days

Just because you can work seven days in a row, doesn’t mean you must work seven days in a row. In most cases, your employer can discipline or terminate you if you don’t work scheduled overtime.

But your employer can’t discipline you if you refuse to work seven days in a row. It’s your choice whether or not you work for seven consecutive days. 

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You Can File a Complaint or Lawsuit If Your Employer Doesn’t Properly Pay You for All of Your Overtime Hours

Be sure to scrutinize your paychecks to make sure your employer is paying you the proper amount for overtime. It’s easy for an employer to shortchange you on the money you earned.

Some do this by ignoring overtime laws or not using the right regular pay rate to calculate your overtime compensation.

Your regular pay rate should include your base hourly rate and other benefits such as non-discretionary bonuses and commissions.

If you’re not being paid overtime for working seven days in a row, or if you’re not being paid enough overtime for your work, you’re likely the victim of wage theft.

The United States House of Representatives recently found that wage theft costs American workers more than an estimated $15 billion per year. That’s a lot of hard-earned money that’s going into the wrong pockets. 

Wage theft victims can sue their employers or file a wage claim with the Division of Labor Standards and Enforcement. An experienced employment lawyer can maximize your recovery in a wage complaint or lawsuit. 

Contact an Attorney to Recover the Value of Your Hard Work

Victims of wage theft don’t have to fight their employers alone.

At Ottinger Employment Lawyers, we have over 20 years of experience, focusing on only representing the rights of employees.

Our firm is a top boutique employment law firm in the country, and we serve our clients with compassion. Our attorneys have helped thousands of employees.

We want to help you, too. Contact us online, or call us at 866-476-7426 for a consultation. 

For details about our Los Angeles office, click here.

For details about our San Francisco office, click here.

Author Photo

Robert Ottinger, Esq.

Robert Ottinger is an employment attorney who focuses on representing executives and employees in employment disputes. Before starting his firm, Robert slugged it out in courtrooms trying cases for the government. Robert served as a Deputy Attorney General for the California Department of Justice in Los Angeles and then as Assistant Attorney General for the New York Attorney General’s Office in Manhattan.

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