There are many legal and practical reasons for California employers to keep accurate, careful records of hours worked and wages paid. For example, federal and state tax and other deductions must be correctly calculated. California law also requires employers to include detailed payroll calculations on pay stubs.
California law is serious about protecting employees within its borders. To that end, Labor Code section 925, which became effective in 2017, explicitly provides that an employer, as a condition of employment, may not force employees who primarily work and reside in California to agree to resolve legal disputes arising out of their employment in California, in courts of a different state. The statute also provides that an employer may not deprive an employee of a "substantive protection" of state law in any dispute arising here.
The Institute for Women's Policy Research published a fascinating study in November 2018 that revealed that the gap between the pay women and men receive is more serious than traditional data has shown. Using a sophisticated, multi-year analysis that considered periods of time when people were out of the labor market or worked part-time, the authors concluded that instead of the usual figure cited based on government data that women earn 80 cents on the dollar as compared with men, 49 cents on the dollar is more accurate.