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Employment Law/Scheduled time off


This question is for California. If you are scheduled say 2 pm to 1030 pm and have already started working that day. Can your manager at anytime during the work day say you have to stay past your scheduled time off? No matter what they have you sign in your handbook when you are hired. If so how long can they keep you and where can I find the law for that? Thanks for all your help.


California and Federal wage and hour laws do not regulate the number of hours an employee can be required to work in a day, so the situation you described would be lawful.  If your handbook says there is a maximum and your boss ignores that policy, you might be able to sue for breach of the employment contract if you are fired or disciplined for refusing to stay late, but who wants to take that route?

The good news is that if you are an hourly non-exempt employee, California law requires the payment of time and one half to non-exempt employees for each hour worked over eight in a single workday, each hour worked over forty in a single workweek, and the first eight hours worked on the seventh day of work in a given workweek.  California law also requires employers to pay double time for every hour worked over twelve in a single day and each hour worked over eight on the seventh consecutive day of work in any given workweek.

If you would like more information on the wage and hour laws in California, take a look at this site:

I hope this is helpful to you.  

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Frank C. Magill


I can answer questions about any U.S. labor or employment law question. I cannot answer questions about non-US law. I am not a specialist in employee benefit law (ERISA and HIPAA) or Workers' Compensation law, but will do my best to point questioners toward good resources availabe online. Expertise includes, without limitation, EEO/Affirmative Action/Employment discrimination (Title VII, Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Americans With Disabilities Act, GINA, Fair Credit Reporting Act as applied to employment); Fair Labor Standards Act; Texas labor code; Family Medical Leave Act; employee compensation; discipline and dismissal; force reductions, severance pay programs and administration; collective bargaining, union representation, grievances and arbitration, National Labor Relations Act and National Labor Relations Board; employee handbooks; staffing; dispute resolution outside of traditional labor agreements; employee communications; employment policies and compliance programs; codes of ethics; employment or labor litigation.


30+ years experience as corporate counsel for a Fortune 100 telecom company, specializing in labor and employment law issues. In addition to providing day-to-day advice to my company's internal HR leadership and staff, I've represented the company in numerous labor arbitration cases and at the bargaining table.

Texas, Illinois and Missouri state bars

J.D. 1979, Harvard Law School. B.A., Summa Cum Laude, 1976, Illinois Wesleyan University.

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