Los Angeles Employment Vacation Lawyer
Advocating for Employees Harmed by Illegal Vacation Policies
Companies are not required to offer vacation days, but when they do, they must follow certain procedures to make sure the practice is lawful. As a benefit, vacation days are like a form of compensation, and once granted, they cannot be arbitrarily taken away. So-called “use it or lose it” policies, where unused accumulated vacation days are lost at the end of the year, are illegal in California. Likewise, employees are entitled to payment for unused vacation days upon termination from employment. Nevertheless, countless California employers persist in implementing use-it-or-lose-it policies, and do not pay for unused vacation days upon retirement or termination.
Los Angeles employment vacation lawyer James Kawahito of the Kawahito Law Group in Los Angeles is well-versed in California employment laws governing vacation policies. If your company is not following acceptable practices regarding vacation polices, the Kawahito Law Group can represent you individually or as part of a class action litigation to force your employer to abide by the law and provide you with the vacation time or compensation to which you are entitled.
Facts about vacation days in California
Vacation vests as labor is performed. In other words, if you earn two weeks of vacation per year, then after six months of labor, you will have earned and be entitled to one week of vacation. If you earn twelve days of vacation per year, then one day of vacation would vest after each month worked. Your employer can place reasonable restrictions on when you take your vacation but cannot prohibit you from taking vacation altogether.
Probationary periods are allowed. Company policy can state that no vacation is earned in the first month or three months of employment, the first six months, first year or other period, so long as the use of the probationary period is not actually a subterfuge to avoid including vacation pay in an employee’s compensation. Part-time or temporary employees may also be excluded from earning vacation time, per company policy.
Vacation days can be capped. A company’s vacation policy can limit how many days total an employee can accumulate. If an employee who reaches the ceiling takes vacation days and falls below the cap, the employee can continue to earn vacation days in the future until reaching the cap again. Therefore, employers can set a limit on vacation days that can be accrued, but they cannot take away vacation days that are unused. These policies should be closely scrutinized to ensure they do not unfairly impair or deny the employee’s ability to earn vacation or take earned vacation days.
Unused vacation is prorated at termination. Earned but unused vacation days must be prorated on a daily basis and paid at the employee’s final rate of pay. Your employer can also pay you for unused vacation days at the end of the year, but cannot require you to take vacation in the year it is earned or risk losing the benefit (“use-it-or-lose-it” policies prohibited).
Call Kawahito Law Group in Los Angeles with Questions Surrounding Company Vacation Policies
If your employer requires you to take vacation in the year it is earned or lose it, or if you were not paid for unused vacation days upon separation from employment, call the Kawahito Law Group in Los Angeles at 310-746-5300 for a no-cost, confidential consultation with an experienced and aggressive California employment law lawyer who will fight for your rights and get results.