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Commission Employee Rules California

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  • Commission Employee Rules California

    Looking for specifics that apply to commission employees in California. We currently work 9-12 hours a day frequently without break or lunch due to the schedule established by the company. We travel from our homes to the job site and are reimbursed at .20 per mile after 60 miles round trip. Now we are being required to attend training on our days off without compensation.
    Typically we may earn between $5 and $15 per hour per day depending on the sales for that day. This can be reduced as the percentage earned is averaged over the week and a single bad day can lower your good days to the lowest percentage of pay.

  • #2
    This is complicated.
    - The starting point is your FLSA classification. The only legal method of paying any employee on a 100% commission basis is if the employee passes the federal Outside Sales classification rules. Do you?
    - Assuming that that you are legally Outside Sales, then there is no legal requirement that you are paid overtime, or minimum wage. There is no legal requirement that you be paid extra for training/meetings/whatever, as long as this time not spent actually trying to sell something does not cause the "duties" requirement in the Outside Sales classification to fail.
    - If you fail the Outside Sales requirement, then it gets complicated. We need to know the nature of your employer's business, what you are selling and where you are selling. We need all this to determine which set of rules you are subject to (and there are many choices).
    - The commission rules are very state specific. I am going to suggest that you download a copy of the CA-DLSE manual and read the section on commissions.
    - CA also has some very state specific rules on expense reimbursement. The $0.20/mile rate you cite is almost certainly legally too low. As long as you have download the manual, you will also need to read the section on expense reimbursements.
    - Lunch/breaks are potentially complicated. The rules are different for Exempt and Non-Exempt employees. The rules are also sometimes different for different industries. I am going to include several webpointers. The first is to the Wage Orders. The next are to the generic rules for CA meals rules and CA break rules.
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
    Philip K. **** (1928-1982)


    • #3

      I thought we were considered inside sales since we do not have an office we report to everyday but dispatch from our homes. We then spend between 3 day and 5 days per week at the same location working within office space the clients provide.
      For lunch breaks we were informed that we were required to take a 30 minute meal period but the schedule of clients to be seen is so overwhelming it does not allow time for lunch and breaks are mostly unheard of.
      Thanks for the links, looks like I have some homework ahead of me.


      • #4
        Originally posted by fajenn View Post
        We then spend between 3 day and 5 days per week at the same location working within office space the clients provide.
        How is working at a client Outside Sales? Take a hard look at the Outside Sales rules, because what little you have said does not sound like Outside Sales. It does not even sound like Inside Sales.

        On more time, the Exempt status is everything. Lunch and most everything else is a non-issue until you get the Exempt status resolved.
        "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
        Philip K. **** (1928-1982)


        • #5
          Expense Reimbursement

          Working as an outside sales/photographer earning 100% commission and traveling from 30 to 200 miles per day round trip.
          1. Commission is often way less than minimum wage but hours exceed 10 per day on a regular basis. Does the requirement for a weekly minimum of $455 apply?
          2. Travel reimbursement is .20 per mile after the first 60 miles. I have searched but been unable to find a specific cite regarding this. I did find reimbursement for mileage but is it legal for the company to pay .20 per mile and expect us to claim the rest on our annual tax return?


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