Ever since the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) was enacted in June of 2018 it has been in a constant state of revision.   First, in September of 2018, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 1121, which helped clarify and strengthen the original version of law. Then, in February of 2019, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson introduced Senate Bill 561, similarly intended to clarify and strengthen the CCPA with expansion of the consumer’s right to bring a private cause of action and removing certain ambiguous language. During this period, the California Attorney General’s Office also conducted a CCPA rulemaking process with a six-part series of public forums, allowing all interested persons the opportunity to provide their comments on the new law. And finally, earlier this week, the California Assembly of Privacy and Consumer Protection Committee (“Committee”) introduced several bills intended to clarify some of the remaining ambiguities in the CCPA.

We’ve already reported on one of the bills, introduced by Committee Chairman Ed Chau’s AB 25, which the committee unanimously approved. AB 25 modifies the definition of consumer to exclude employees, and contractors (if a written contract is in place). In addition to AB 25, several other bills were approved by the Committee and will now advance to the Senate Judiciary Committee, chaired by Senator Jackson, a major proponent of protection of consumer rights. It is likely that some of these bills will not survive the legislative process, and others will be revised along the way. Below is a list of the Committee approved CCPA amendment bills:

  • AB 846 A bill that updates the clause prohibiting businesses from discriminating against consumers who exercises “opt-out” rights by clarifying that loyalty, rewards, and similar programs are exempt.
  • AB 873 – A bill that helps clarify ambiguities in the definitions of personal and deidentified information.
  • AB 874A bill that updates the public record exemption under the definition of personal information.
  • AB 1146 A bill clarifying a consumer’s right to request that a business delete or not sell the consumer’s personal information, in the context of a motor vehicle warranty or recall information.
  • AB 1355 – An additional bill introduced by Chairman Chau makes technical changes to CCPA drafting flaws.
  • AB 1564 – A bill providing alternatives to the current requirement that a business makes available to consumers a toll-free number to submit requests for information regarding the use of their personal information. Alternatives include an email address and physical address for submitting requests.

The Committee also approved AB 981 which would make significant changes affecting the insurance industry, including changes that would hope to incorporate California’s Insurance Information and Privacy Protection Act (“IIPPA”) to avoid overlap with CCPA, and exempting insurance institutions, agents, and support organizations (insurers) from certain CCPA provisions. Other changes include:

  1. Providing that insurers or insurance transactions subject to the IIPPA shall be exempt from the CCPA. This exemption would not apply to the CCPA’s limited private right of action for data breaches or business activity not subject to the IIPPA.
  2. Defining various terms for the purposes of the IIPPA to mirror the definitions provided in the CCPA, including “consumer” to reflect the definition proposed in the March 25, 2019 version of AB 25, and “personal information” to reflect the definition of that term provided in the CCPA, with the exception of “household,” which is absent from the definition, similar to AB 873.
  3. Requiring insurers to provide certain notices concerning their information practices and privacy policies and procedures, including communications to individuals regarding the right to opt-out of disclosures.
  4. Requiring an insurance institution, agent, or insurance-support organization to implement a comprehensive written information security program that includes administrative, technical, and physical safeguards for the protection of policyholder information, as specified, and authorize the commissioner to audit an insurance intuition, agent, or support organization’s compliance.
  5. Prohibiting an insurer from “unfairly discriminating,” against an applicant or policyholder because that applicant or policyholder has opted out from the disclosure of nonpublic PI, or did not grant authorization for the disclosure of nonpublic personal medical record information.

In addition, the Senate Judiciary Committee was scheduled in a April 23 hearing to review SB 753, a bill that would have revised the definition of “sell” to exempt situations where a business “pursuant to a written contract, shares, discloses, or otherwise communicates to another business or third party a unique identifier only to the extent necessary to serve or audit a specific advertisement to the consumer.” The bill would require such a “contract to prohibit the other business or third party from sharing, selling, or otherwise communicating the information except as necessary to serve or audit advertisement from the business.” Review of SB 753 was cancelled at the request of Senator Henry Stern, the bill’s author, who faced criticism that the bill would negatively impact the CCPA’s purpose.

We will continue to track and update on the fate of these bills. While it remains unclear which bills will ultimately stick, the CCPA is certain to see additional changes in the upcoming months.

Photo of Joseph J. Lazzarotti Joseph J. Lazzarotti

Joseph J. Lazzarotti is a Principal in the Morristown, New Jersey, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He founded and currently leads the firm’s Privacy, e-Communication and Data Security Practice, edits the firm’s Privacy Blog, and is a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP) with the International Association of Privacy Professionals. Trained as an employee benefits lawyer, focused on compliance, Mr. Lazzarotti also is a member of the firm’s Employee Benefits Practice Group.

In short, his practice focuses on the matrix of laws governing the privacy, security, and management of data, as well as the impact and regulation of social media. He also counsels companies on compliance, fiduciary, taxation, and administrative matters with respect to employee benefit plans.

Privacy and cybersecurity experience – Mr. Lazzarotti counsels multinational, national and regional companies in all industries on the broad array of laws, regulations, best practices, and preventive safeguards. The following are examples of areas of focus in his practice:

  • Advising health care providers, business associates, and group health plan sponsors concerning HIPAA/HITECH compliance, including risk assessments, policies and procedures, incident response plan development, vendor assessment and management programs, and training.
  • Coached hundreds of companies through the investigation, remediation, notification, and overall response to data breaches of all kinds – PHI, PII, payment card, etc.
  • Helping organizations address questions about the application, implementation, and overall compliance with European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and, in particular, its implications in the U.S., together with preparing for the California Consumer Privacy Act.
  • Working with organizations to develop and implement video, audio, and data-driven monitoring and surveillance programs. For instance, in the transportation and related industries, Joe has worked with numerous clients on fleet management programs involving the use of telematics, dash-cams, event data recorders (EDR), and related technologies. He also has advised many clients in the use of biometrics including with regard to consent, data security, and retention issues under BIPA and other laws.
  • Assisting clients with growing state data security mandates to safeguard personal information, including steering clients through detailed risk assessments and converting those assessments into practical “best practice” risk management solutions, including written information security programs (WISPs). Related work includes compliance advice concerning FTC Act, Regulation S-P, GLBA, and New York Reg. 500.
  • Advising clients about best practices for electronic communications, including in social media, as well as when communicating under a “bring your own device” (BYOD) or “company owned personally enabled device” (COPE) environment.
  • Conducting various levels of privacy and data security training for executives and employees
  • Supports organizations through mergers, acquisitions, and reorganizations with regard to the handling of employee and customer data, and the safeguarding of that data during the transaction.
  • Representing organizations in matters involving inquiries into privacy and data security compliance before federal and state agencies including the HHS Office of Civil Rights, Federal Trade Commission, and various state Attorneys General.

Benefits counseling experience – Mr. Lazzarotti’s work in the benefits counseling area covers many areas of employee benefits law. Below are some examples of that work:

  • As part of the Firm’s Health Care Reform Team, he advises employers and plan sponsors regarding the establishment, administration and operation of fully insured and self-funded health and welfare plans to comply with ERISA, IRC, ACA/PPACA, HIPAA, COBRA, ADA, GINA, and other related laws.
  • Guiding clients through the selection of plan service providers, along with negotiating service agreements with vendors to address plan compliance and operations, while leveraging data security experience to ensure plan data is safeguarded.
  • Counsels plan sponsors on day-to-day compliance and administrative issues affecting plans.
  • Assists in the design and drafting of benefit plan documents, including severance and fringe benefit plans.
  • Advises plan sponsors concerning employee benefit plan operation, administration and correcting errors in operation.

Mr. Lazzarotti speaks and writes regularly on current employee benefits and data privacy and cybersecurity topics and his work has been published in leading business and legal journals and media outlets, such as The Washington Post, Inside Counsel, Bloomberg, The National Law Journal, Financial Times, Business Insurance, HR Magazine and NPR, as well as the ABA Journal, The American Lawyer, Law360, Bender’s Labor and Employment Bulletin, the Australian Privacy Law Bulletin and the Privacy, and Data Security Law Journal.

Mr. Lazzarotti served as a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Laura Denvir Stith on the Missouri Court of Appeals.

Photo of Jason C. Gavejian Jason C. Gavejian

Jason C. Gavejian is a Principal in the Morristown, New Jersey, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. and a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US) with the International Association of Privacy Professionals.

As a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US), Mr. Gavejian focuses on the matrix of laws governing privacy, security, and management of data. Mr. Gavejian is Co-Editor of, and a regular contributor to, the firm’s Workplace Privacy, Data Management & Security Report blog.

Mr. Gavejian’s work in the area of privacy and data security includes counseling international, national, and regional companies on the vast array of privacy and security mandates, preventive measures, policies, procedures, and best practices. This includes, but is not limited to, the privacy and security requirements under state, federal, and international law (e.g., HIPAA/HITECH, GDPR, California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), FTC Act, ECPA, SCA, GLBA etc.). Mr. Gavejian helps companies in all industries to assess information risk and security as part of the development and implementation of comprehensive data security safeguards including written information security programs (WISP). Additionally, Mr. Gavejian assists companies in analyzing issues related to: electronic communications, social media, electronic signatures (ESIGN/UETA), monitoring and recording (GPS, video, audio, etc.), biometrics, and bring your own device (BYOD) and company owned personally enabled device (COPE) programs, including policies and procedures to address same. He regularly advises clients on compliance issues under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and has represented clients in suits, including class actions, brought in various jurisdictions throughout the country under the TCPA.

Mr. Gavejian represents companies with respect to inquiries from the HHS/OCR, state attorneys general, and other agencies alleging wrongful disclosure of personal/protected information. Mr. Gavejian negotiates vendor agreements and other data privacy and security agreements, including business associate agreements. His work in the area of privacy and data security includes counseling and coaching clients through the process of investigating and responding to breaches of the personally identifiable information (PII) or protected health information (PHI) they maintain about consumers, customers, employees, patients, and others, while also assisting clients in implementing policies, practices, and procedures to prevent future data incidents.

Mr. Gavejian represents management exclusively in all aspects of employment litigation, including restrictive covenants, class-actions, harassment, retaliation, discrimination, and wage and hour claims in both federal and state courts. Mr. Gavejian regularly appears before administrative agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Office for Civil Rights (OCR), the New Jersey Division of Civil Rights, and the New Jersey Department of Labor. Mr. Gavejian’s practice also focuses on advising/counseling employers regarding daily workplace issues.

Mr. Gavejian’s litigation experience, coupled with his privacy practice, provides him with a unique view of many workplace issues and the impact privacy, data security, and social media may play in actual or threatened lawsuits.

Mr. Gavejian regularly provides training to both executives and employees and regularly speaks on current privacy, data security, monitoring, recording, BYOD/COPE, biometrics (BIPA), social media, TCPA, and information management issues. His views on these topics have been discussed in multiple publications, including the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle (SFGATE), National Law Review, Bloomberg BNA, Inc.com, @Law Magazine, Risk and Insurance Magazine, LXBN TV, Business Insurance Magazine, and HR.BLR.com.

Mr. Gavejian is the Co-Chair of Jackson Lewis’ Hispanic Attorney Resource Group, a group committed to increasing the firm’s visibility among Hispanic-American and other minority attorneys, as well as mentoring the firm’s attorneys to assist in their training and development. Mr. Gavejian also previously served on the National Leadership Committee of the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) and regularly volunteers his time for pro bono matters.

Prior to joining Jackson Lewis, Mr. Gavejian served as a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Richard J. Donohue on the Superior Court of New Jersey, Bergen County.