When you chose a career as a barber or hairstylist, you did so because the work appeals to you and because you have bills to pay. Unfortunately, there are employers who will take advantage of employees who don’t know the law. The California Senate has recently passed a law to protect barbers, cosmetologists, estheticians, manicurists, and electrologists in one area where they can get ripped off: commissions.
SB 490 Commission Based Pay
Senate Bill 490, introduced by Steven Bradford, regulates employers who attempt to pay barbers and cosmetologists on commission. Significantly, it requires that if an employer chooses to pay an employee licensed as a barber or cosmetologist on commission, then:
- In addition to the commissions the employee receives, the employee’s base hourly wage (including break times) must be at least two times the minimum wage; and
- Wages must be paid twice per calendar month.
The commission may be either a percentage of services or a flat sum. This new law is meant to create clear expectations for employers, while also providing wage protection for barbers and cosmetologists. Of course, paying on commissions is optional; however, the failure to comply with SB 490 is that the employee is entitled to piece-rate compensation. Piece-rate pay is more complex and easier for employers to get wrong, which is an incentive for employers to properly implement the new commission based pay system.
AB 326 Required Training
In addition to cutting down on employer abuses regarding commissions and wages, the legislature also took a positive step of focusing on physical and sexual abuse awareness among licensed barbers, cosmetologists, estheticians, manicurists, and electrologists. AB 326 requires the State Board of Barbering and Cosmetology to develop required training to develop such awareness. In addition, the Board is also obligated to create recommendations for a campaign to promote physical and sexual abuse awareness by advertising via “mail, television, radio, motion picture, newspaper, book, Internet, or other electronic communication.”
Notably, this law adds to the existing statutes that require that the State Board create training and awareness campaigns to ensure that professionals are aware of basic labor laws.
Call Moss Bollinger
All California workers have legal rights and protections. Unfortunately, many people are unaware of their legal rights and employers take full advantage of this. If you believe that your employer is skirting the law, contact Moss Bollinger today so that we can evaluate your claim. Our firm is dedicated to employees who want their voices heard against employer misconduct. We work on a contingency basis and do not get paid unless you do. Call Moss Bollinger today at (866) 535-2994 for a free consultation or reach us online.