California Workplace Law Blog

Insight & Commentary on California Workplace Law Issues & Developments

On the eve of the Assembly Bill 5 (“AB 5”) effective date, Judge Roger Benitez granted the California Trucking Association’s (“Association”) request for a Temporary Restraining Order to prevent enforcement of the law which the Association argued requires truckers to be classified as employees instead of independent contractors. On January 13th, Judge Benitez heard arguments regarding the Association’s request for a preliminary injunction.  Preemption based on the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act (“FAAAA”) is the…
While the trucking industry waits for the federal court to hear arguments on the California Trucking Association’s request for an injunction against application of AB5, Judge William Highberger of the Los Angeles Superior Court ruled on January 8, 2020, that AB 5 runs afoul of the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994 (“FAAAA”). The case is an enforcement action brought by the Los Angeles City Attorney’s office for misclassification of truck drivers. The…
Earlier today, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California heard oral arguments on whether the court should enter a preliminary injunction preventing the State of California (State) from enforcing AB 51 while the court resolves the underlying challenge to the new law on the merits. See Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America, et al. v. Becerra, E.D. Cal. Case No. 2:19-cv-02456-KJM-DB. AB 51 purports to bar California employers from…
In Kim v. Reins International California, Inc. 18 Cal.App.5th 1052 (2017), the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District held an employee-plaintiff that settled and dismissed his individual claims was no longer an “aggrieved employee” for purposes of standing to bring a claim for civil penalties under the Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”). Under PAGA, an “aggrieved employee” may bring a representative action on behalf of him or herself and other “aggrieved employees”…
The California Trucking Association (“Association”) challenges Assembly Bill 5 (“AB 5”) by arguing the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act (“FAAAA”) of 1994 preempts state laws “relating to a price, route or service of any motor carrier”. After the California Supreme Court decided Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court (“Dynamex”) in 2018, Governor Newsom signed into law, California State Assembly Bill 5, which clarified the Dynamex independent contractor test and codified the test into law. …
The State of California has been temporarily enjoined from enforcing Assembly Bill 51’s prohibition on mandatory employment arbitration agreements. Chamber of Commerce of the United States, et al. v. Becerra, et al., No. 2:19-cv-2456 (E.D. Cal. Dec. 30, 2019). Enforcement of Assembly Bill 51 is enjoined until the court can decide the pending motion for a preliminary injunction, which is set for a hearing on January 10, 2020.The court ruled that the U.S. Chamber of…
As 2019 comes to a close, here is a look ahead to some of the legislation going into effect on January 1, 2020, that affects employers in California. Independent Contractors Assembly Bill 5 codifies and clarifies the California Supreme Court’s 2018 Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County, 4 Cal. 5th 903. In Dynamex, the Court adopted the “ABC Test” for determining whether an individual should be classified as an independent…
Beginning January 1, 2020, agreements to settle employment disputes may no longer contain “no rehire” provisions, as California passes additional legislation spurred on by the #MeToo movement.  California joins Vermont and Oregon as the first states to prohibit “no rehire” provisions in employment settlement agreements. “No rehire” provisions typically state that a former employee will not be rehired by the employer or its parent, subsidiary, or affiliate companies as part of an agreement to settle…
California employers are not alone as they wrestle with AB 51’s January 1, 2020 new law on mandatory arbitration agreements. (For background on AB 51 see our article). On December 6, 2019, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business organizations filed suit against the State of California to have AB 51 declared preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA). Alternatively, the lawsuit seeks a declaration that AB 51’s express FAA carve out provision,…
The California Supreme Court announced that it would decide whether its April 30, 2018 landmark Dynamex decision is retroactive. The Supreme Court’s determination will have a significant impact on companies utilizing independent contractors in California. In Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County, the California Supreme Court adopted the “ABC Test” to for evaluating contractor classifications under California law. On June 20, 2018, the California Supreme Court denied a petition for…