Bonus Payment Class Action

California Bonus Payment Class ActionBonus Payment

California employers often promise their employees a bonus as a way of stimulating productivity, motivation to work harder or creating additional incentives that benefit the employer. This kind of pay is not simply “extra” compensation. Once a California employer has promised a bonus, the additional pay is subject to California wage and hour law. Once paid, a bonus often increases the premium rate that employees earn for overtime.

When Does a California Worker Earn a Bonus?

In California, an employer who has promised a bonus to its employees must pay the bonus, provided the employee has fulfilled all the conditions necessary to earn it.


California employers have the right to establish the conditions under which employees can earn a bonus. Conditions can include sales targets, productivity goals, injury prevention, and duration of employment. If the condition is not fulfilled, the employee does not earn the bonus. But once the condition is satisfied, the bonus pay is the property of the employee.

Are Commissions and Bonuses the Same?

No. A bonus is distinguishable from a commission. A bonus is paid in addition to the employee’s regular compensation, whereas a commission constitutes a form of compensation. A commission is typically a percentage of the sales that a sales representative makes. Even so, an employee who works on commission may still be entitled to a bonus.

Two Types of Bonuses: Discretionary and Non-Discretionary

A discretionary bonus is basically a gift, where the employee’s performance is not a factor. A Christmas bonus or some other gift paid during a holiday or special occasion would be an example of a discretionary bonus. Generally, an employee has no legal right to recover a discretionary bonus.

A non-discretionary bonus is tied to the employees performance of some condition, and once that condition is satisfied, the employee is entitled to that bonus. Critically, the amount of a non-discretionary bonus must be included in any calculation of the employee’s overtime rate of pay.

If you have been denied a non-discretionary bonus, one that is based on your productivity, and you have satisfied the conditions, you may have a cause of action. Also, if you have been paid a bonus, but the bonus has not been taken into account in your overtime pay, you may also have a cause of action.

If you and your coworkers have been denied a non-discretionary bonus, call our bonus payment class action lawyers in Los Angeles, at The Nourmand Law Firm. Our Los Angeles employment lawyers are aggressive, knowledgeable and experienced class action attorneys. We will fight to ensure you and your coworkers receive all wages you are owed, including your bonus.

We represent employees who have been denied bonus compensation, or otherwise injured by their employers wage and hour practices throughout in Los Angeles, Koreatown, Pasadena, San Bernardino, San Fernando Valley, San Gabriel Valley, the South Bay and throughout California.

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