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In the state of California, what rules apply to holiday shutdowns?

California law does not require a private employer to provide its employees with paid holidays, close its business on any holiday or give employees a day off for any particular holiday. If an employer closes its business on holidays and gives its employees time off from work with pay, such a circumstance exists pursuant to a policy or practice adopted by the employer, pursuant to the terms of a collective bargaining agreement or pursuant to the terms of an employment agreement between the employer and employee, as there is nothing in the law that requires such a practice. In addition, the law does not mandate an employer to pay an employee a special premium for work performed on a holiday, Saturday or Sunday, other than the overtime premium required for work performed in excess of eight hours in a workday or 40 hours in a workweek.

Many employers in the state of California use holiday shutdowns. During a holiday shutdown, nonexempt employees need not be paid their hourly wages because, in accordance with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), nonexempt employees are simply paid for the hours worked. However, exempt employees must be paid a full weekly salary if they perform any work in a workweek and if they are ready and willing to work. Therefore, if an employer shuts down its operation for a holiday for only part of a workweek and an exempt employee performs any work during that week, the exempt employee must be paid for the full week. However, if an employer shuts down its operation for a full workweek, then exempt employees need not be paid for that period.

Source: Division of Labor Standards Enforcement


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