As this blog has mentioned on previous occasions, there are federal laws which establish the minimum amount employers must pay their employees, how long employers can make the employees work without paying overtime, etc.
A Los Angeles resident should be aware of these federal laws, as they exist for his or her protection against unscrupulous employers who might try to take advantage of him or her and pay too little.
However, they should also bear in mind that these are minimum standards, and a state can set its own rules that go above and beyond federal rules. In fact, California's wage and hour laws in many respects require California employers to do more than what federal laws require.
If employers in Los Angeles do not meet California's standards, they still risk facing the consequences of wage and hour violations even if they are complying with the federal rules.
By way of example, like the federal government, California exempts management professionals from overtime requirements, meaning employers can pay these employees a flat salary but expect them to work irregular hours, even if the end result is the employee works more than 40 hours a week.
However, unlike the federal government, which has a much lower threshold, California requires employers to pay management at least twice the state's minimum wage, or, based on 2017 figures, equals about $43,000 a year.
Just because an employer is following federal standards, it doesn't mean that they are acting legally with respect to overtime or other rules. An employee who suspects that their employer is not following California's standards may have legal options.