My question involves employment and labor law for the state of: California
Here's my case. I just completed one year with my current employer. I'm hired as a piecemeal surveyor, and the rate I am reimbursed at is 0.25/mile, which obviously doesn't cut the cake when all the wear-and-tear expenses are accounted for. I drive at least 5,000 miles a month, so the maintenance, repair and wear-and-tear definitely accumulates! Couple that with the fact that I do not get paid any drive time and I am being driven mad! Some of the cities where I work are 4 hours away! That's at least 8 hours in driving alone, let alone the time it takes for me to complete actual work.
Anyway, I have been trying to research labor codes and reimbursement. From what I understand, an employer in California is required by law to reimburse their employee for expenses accrued on business trips, but the employer would need to provide a good reason for not providing the full amount of the IRS rate. Is this correct? Should I go to the Labor Commission with my case?
Here is an example. Last year, I was reimbursed about $7,000 for the whole year for mileage, when under the IRS rate I was owed $16,000. When taxes came, I was allowed a $5,000 deductible, which as you can see, I reached easily having $9,000 still owed to me. Even with that deductible, I'm out $4,000 for that year. I do not want the same thing happening to me, as I am constantly running low on funds to afford gas to get to work too often lately! Not to mention the used tires I keep having to purchase and oil changes every month.
Can someone help me to understand the ins and outs of my situation? I am ready to fill out the claim forms for the Labor Commission, but I am somewhat confused since they ask hourly wages. And I am not paid hourly at all, which is another headache altogether when I think about my reimbursement and the hours I put into driving/working for this company. Can my drivetime also be figured into the equation?
Well, thanks in advance for anyone's insight