Generally, employees (both exempt and non-exempt) may not be required to work 7 days in a row. Unless an exception applies, employees are entitled to get one day off after working 6 consecutive days. This is true whether employees are hired by the day, week, month, or year, and whether they work during the day or night.
The "day-of-rest rule" prohibits California employers from requiring employees to work 7 days in a row unless an exception applies. But, it probably does not prohibit employees voluntarily agreeing to work 7 or more consecutive days. However, for the decision to be truly voluntary, employers may not lead employees to think that their jobs will be affected (either positively or negatively) based on whether they volunteer to work the consecutive days.
Employers may require employees to work seven or more days in a row if one of the following exceptions applies:
• there's an emergency;
• the work is necessary for the care of animals, crops, or agricultural lands;
• the work is performed to protect life or property from loss or destruction;
• the nature of employees' jobs reasonably require 7 or more consecutive days of work (maybe fishermen?) and employees average one day off in 7 during the month;
• employees are covered by a collective bargaining agreement that expressly provides that the rule requiring one day of rest in seven does not apply;
• employees do not work more than 6 hours in a day or 30 hours total during a 7-day period; or
• California's Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) grants employers a hardship exemption.
(An "emergency" is defined as any unpredictable or unavoidable event that happens at an unscheduled time and requires immediate action.)
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If you are an hourly employee and in the absence of any contract or collective bargaining (Union) agreement, no. Pursuant to the California Labor Code, an employer may not require that you work more than 7 days in a row without time off. Request the time off, in writing, and in a way that you have proof of receipt (certified mail, email with confirmation, fax with confirmation). If they terminate you as a result, you would have a claim for wrongful termination.
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