Calculating overtime according to California labor laws is so complicated, it practically takes an accounting degree to get it right. It’s probably not something you want to do by hand, unless you actually are an accountant.
According to the DIR website, the California overtime rules require that employees are compensated for:
- One and one-half times the employee’s regular rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of eight hours up to and including 12 hours in any workday, and for the first eight hours worked on the seventh consecutive day of work in a workweek; and
- Double the employee’s regular rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of 12 hours in any workday and for all hours worked in excess of eight on the seventh consecutive day of work in a workweek.
The rules look pretty straight forward at first but there is actually a lot to consider here like exceptions and the workweek and workday. You have to carefully look at each day to see whether it falls in straight time, time and a half, or double time. Then you have to calculate the pay and add all the categories together. Make sure not to count overtime twice – if overtime is owed for a day, it isn’t also owed for the week. Plus, you have to make sure that there are no hours from the previous pay period that need to be taken into account. Mistakes are almost guaranteed if you’re using paper and pencil to figure this out.
The only truly accurate way to calculate California overtime is to have a computer program do it for you. Plug in the time and get an accurate value back.
Timesheets.com makes it easy to track California overtime. The software service uses the time entered by employees to accurately calculate overtime and double time by the day and week. Employers don’t have to try and memorize the rules. They just click to run a payroll report and it’s all done automatically.