Berger & Montague, P.C. is investigating potential class
action lawsuits on behalf of California employees whose workplace
has a "use it or lose it" vacation policy or who were not paid for
their unused vacation days upon leaving the company.
paid time off policy
California employers are not legally required to provide their
employees with paid or unpaid vacation time. However, if an
employer does provide paid vacation days, there are certain
guidelines they must follow. This falls under California Labor Code
Under California paid time off laws, earned vacation time is
considered wages, and employees accrue vacation time as they work.
For example, if an employee is entitled to two weeks of paid
vacation days per year, they will have accrued five vacation days
after six months. Vacation pay adds up as it is earned and must be
paid to an employee when they leave the company, even if they are
While employers must pay employees for the unused vacation days
that they earn, employers can place a cap on vacation accrual. This
means that once an employee earns a certain amount of paid time
off, they cannot earn any more until they use some of that accrued
California vacation time accrued?
Because California vacation law classifies paid vacation as a
form of wages, it is earned as labor is performed. California
employers can set up a vacation plan where vacation is earned on a
day-by-day basis, weekly basis, monthly basis, or some other basis.
Every company has their own, unique vacation accrual policy. There
is no uniform standard or law that companies must follow. However,
when an employee leaves the company, their unused vacation pay must
be calculated on a daily basis.
California "use it or lose it" vacation plans legal? No.
In California, vacation pay is another form of wages. Therefore,
an employer must pay an employee for the yearly vacation time they
earned but did not take.
California Labor Code Section 227.3 include guidelines on paid sick
California sick leave law is covered under the Healthy Workplace
Healthy Family Act of 2014. Under the act, an employee qualifies
for paid sick leave by:
- Working for the same employer, on or after January 1, 2015, for
at least 30 days within a year in California, and
- Satisfying a 90-day employment period before taking any sick
Employees earn at least one hour of paid sick leave for every 30
hours worked, and accrual begins on the first day of employment.
Employers can limit the amount of paid sick leave an employee can
use in one year, and accrued paid sick leave can be carried over to
the next year. However, employers can cap the carried-over sick
leave at six days.
California vacation law settlements
Numerous California vacation law class action lawsuits have been
settled over the past several years:
- Kmart: In October 2011, Kmart agreed
to pay over $100,000 to settle a proposed class action brought by
its California-based employees that alleged the company unlawfully
avoided paying out earned paid time off.
- Disney: In July 2015, The Walt Disney
Co. agreed to pay $500,000 to settle allegations that Walt Disney
Worldwide Services Inc. and Walt Disney Parks and Resorts U.S. Inc.
failed to pay workers at Disneyland and several hotels and
attractions earned vacation time when they left Disney.
- Securitas: In November 2015,
Securitas Security Services USA Inc. agreed to pay $2.5 million to
resolve a lawsuit from current and former security guards who
claimed Securitas did not pay its guards for earned vacation.
If you are a California employee whose workplace has a "use it
or lose it" vacation policy or who was not paid for their unused
vacation days when you left the company, contact Berger &
Montague. You may be able to file a class action lawsuit.
have to pay to consult with an attorney?
We are happy to talk with you about your potential claims free
of charge. If we decide to represent you in a lawsuit, we will
enter into a written contingent fee agreement with you. A
contingent fee agreement means we only get paid if we win, and that
we will receive our fees from the amount paid by the Defendant in
Please contact us to discuss the details of your case. You
- Use the contact form on this page ("Inquire About Your
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Call (800) 424-6690
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