Whether you have a family or live alone, you have financial obligations to take care of, and that is why you go to work each day. In return for completing your duties, your employer is supposed to pay you for your time at an agreed upon rate and in compliance with federal and California law. When that does not happen, workers like you can stand up for your rights through wage and hour disputes.
Without the wages you earned and were promised, you may not be able to pay for your housing, food and utilities, among other things. You may wonder whether your employer is singling you out, but more than likely, you are not. If you are not being paid correctly, it is likely your co-workers are not either.
California employers must follow the requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act, along with the parallel state laws, regarding issues such as making sure you earn at least minimum wage and that you get paid overtime if it is owed to you. The act also provides you with the right to rest and meal breaks, along with paid training whether it takes place at your work site or another location. Moreover, if your job requires you to be on-call, respond to work-related emails and more outside of your work hours, you should be compensated.
If you think you are not being paid what you are owed, you have the right to question it. If your employer fails to correct the issue and pay you any back wages owed, you may need to go outside the company for relief. Before taking any further action, it may be beneficial to discuss the situation with a California employment law attorney with experience in wage and hour disputes.