As previously reported, California law (AB 1228) will require fast food workers to be paid a minimum of $20 per hour effective April 1, 2024. The Labor Commissioner’s Office has posted a Fast Food Minimum Wage Frequently Asked Questions to address the new law. The FAQ provides that to qualify as an exempt employee, an employee must receive a salary of at least two times the state minimum wage and meet other specific requirements. The FAQ notes that for employees employed by a fast food restaurant, this means that the minimum salary amount is $83,200 starting on April 1, 2024. Further, a supplement to the minimum wage order should also be posted and can be found here. California employers with questions about AB 1228 should contact experienced counsel.

California Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law AB 1228, which requires that fast-food workers who work at a national fast food chain (defined as a limited-service restaurant consisting of more than 60 establishments nationally) be paid a minimum of $20 per hour, effective April 1, 2024. The bill also creates a new Fast Food Council that will determine minimum standards on wages, working hours, and other working conditions. The Fast Food Council will institute minimum wages for these employees on an annual basis. Establishments that operate a bakery that produces and sells bread are not covered by the law. Also, grocery establishments that have a restaurant on their premises and directly employ the employees who work at the restaurant are not covered by the law.

On September 5, 2022, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed the Fast Food Accountability and Standards Recovery Act (FAST Recovery Act or A.B. 257). The FAST Recovery Act creates the Fast Food Council, responsible for establishing minimum standards for employees in the fast-food industry, including establishing minimum wages, working hours, and other working conditions related to health and safety in the fast-food industry. The FAST Recovery Act will take effect on January 1, 2023, and will become inoperative on January 1, 2029.

Continue Reading California’s FAST Recovery Act Establishes a Council With Broad Authority to Set Standards for Fast Food Workers

On January 20, 2022, members of the California Assembly voted 43-13 to approve amendments to Assembly Bill 257, which seeks to enact the Fast Food Accountability and Standards Recovery Act (known as the “FAST Recovery Act”). Initially introduced on January 15, 2021, AB 257 would establish a Fast Food Sector Council (“Council”) charged with establishing sectorwide “minimum standards on wages, working hours, and other working conditions related to the health, safety, and welfare of, and supplying the necessary cost of proper living to, fast food restaurant workers, as well as effecting interagency coordination and prompt agency responses in this regard.” Continue Reading California Assembly Amends FAST Recovery Act Proposal

On January 1, 2024, California’s state minimum wage will increase to $16 per hour for all employers. This minimum wage rate applies to all employees, subject to a few limited exceptions. Correspondingly, exempt employees in California must earn no less than two times the state’s minimum wage, or an annual salary of no less than $66,560 (or $1,280 per week) to meet this threshold requirement. Employers should post the Minimum Wage Order and the Wage Order applicable to their workplace at a worksite area accessible to employees. The wage orders can be downloaded and printed from the workplace postings page on the California Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) website here.

Continue Reading California’s Minimum Wage Increases on January 1, 2024