Prevailing Wage Law

Protecting the Rights of California’s Underpaid Workers

The California Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) sets the wage rates for workers on public works projects. These rates are the law and any deviation from them is illegal.

Public works projects are also known as prevailing wage jobs, where the state government sets and enforces the rates for a wide range of job classifications. These rates include both the basic hourly pay rate as well as overtime rates, overtime rules, and minimum fringe benefits that must be provided to workers. The rules and rates have the force of law.

Donahoo & Associates has the experience and expertise to help you if you have been underpaid. Contact us for a free case evaluation.

Wage Rate Determinations

The DIR publishes determinations that define the regions, classifications and associated pay rates for all workers on public works projects. Using these determinations, you can identify the rates that apply to your work. Sometimes calculating can be complicated, if you work on multiple projects, have several job responsibilities, work overtime or travel between job sites.

If you think you have not been properly compensated, contact Donahoo & Associates. We will work with you to determine your proper wage rate. If it doesn’t match your pay stub, you may have a case to bring against your employer.

Prevailing Wage Classifications

All work performed on public works projects must be compensated according to prevailing wage classifications. Common classifications include (but are not limited to):

  • Laborer
  • Carpenter
  • Electrician
  • Iron Worker
  • Journeyman
  • Cement Mason
  • Fence Builder
  • Teamster
  • Painter
  • Landscaper
  • Boilermaker
  • Pile Driver
  • Drywall Installer
  • Hazardous Material
  • Asbestos Worker
  • Operating Engineer
  • Parking & Highway Improvement

To review the full list of classifications, visit the DIR web site:

Prevailing Wage Law Experts

The attorneys at Donahoo & Associates are experts in prevailing wage law. We have represented many employees at court and in arbitration. We have a proven record for verdicts and settlements that favor our clients. We never represent employers.

Donahoo & Associates has a strong history of success in prevailing wage disputes. Let us help you. We know how to investigate prevailing wage infractions and bring cases to successful conclusion.