California Workplace Law Blog

Insight & Commentary on California Workplace Law Issues & Developments

On July 30, 2019, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed SB 30 into law, changing existing law to permit opposite-sex couples under the age of 62 years old to register as domestic partners. Those who enter into domestic partnerships have the same rights, protections, and benefits as spouses under California law, including the right, if otherwise eligible, to use sick time, take protected leave pursuant to the California Family Rights Act, or receive Paid Family Leave…
On October 10, 2019, Governor Gavin Newsom signed AB 673 into law, expanding an employee’s right to collect penalties for an employer’s failure to timely pay wages. Prior to the enactment of AB 673, Labor Code section 210 provided a penalty that was directly recoverable by the Labor Commissioner or by an employee authorized to bring a claim under California’s Private Attorneys’ General Act (PAGA). A recovery by the Labor Commissioner resulted in the penalties…
A California state appellate court has ruled that the correct rate for paying meal and rest period premiums is one hour of pay at an employee’s base hourly rate, not the regular rate of pay used for calculating overtime wages. This is the first published California case to make this distinction. Pursuant to § 226.7 of the California Labor Code and the applicable Wage Orders of the Industrial Welfare Commission, an employer that fails to…
To ensure your business complies with the law and gets a dose of wellness, Jackson Lewis attorney Pamela Palpallatoc, RYT 200, and certified OfficeYogaTM instructor provides sexual harassment training integrated with yoga stretching, breathing and meditation. Yoga mats, fancy yoga pants, and sweating are all optional. Pamela has experience teaching in workplaces, where employees have never practiced yoga or do not have time to change and shower, and makes the practice accessible for all. Proactively…
Currently, state law mandates private employers with 15 or more employees to provide employees 30 days of paid leave in a one-year period when an employee participates in an organ donation. Employers also are required to provide bone marrow donors five days of paid leave. Now, Governor Gavin Newsom has signed AB 1223, which extends the amount of leave an organ donor may take. Private employers must now provide a maximum of an additional 30…
Presently, an employee alleging harassment, discrimination, or other claim under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”) has one year from the alleged act to file a complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“DFEH”). Filing such a complaint is a prerequisite to filing a civil action. The employee can either request that the DFEH immediately issue a Right to Sue Notice, or can opt to have the DFEH investigate the claim, which…
California employers may face harsh consequences for failing to pay arbitration fees on time under a bill (Senate Bill 707) signed by Governor Gavin Newsom on October 13, 2019. The new law go into effect on January 1, 2020. Under the new law, if an employer fails to pay fees required for the commencement or continuation of an arbitration within 30 days of the payment’s due date, the employer’s conduct is deemed a material breach…
California has joined a number of states in passing legislation purporting to prohibit mandatory arbitration agreements for sexual harassment and other claims. Such laws have gained popularity in the wake of the #MeToo movement, but are subject to challenge under Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) preemption principles. Under Assembly Bill 51, signed by Governor Gavin Newsom on October 10, 2019, California employers might be prohibited from requiring employees to sign new mandatory arbitration agreements concerning disputes…
A new California law, Senate Bill 142 (“SB 142”), effective January 1, 2020, expands on existing Labor Code requirements for employee lactation accommodations and provides significant new consequences to employers for non-compliance.  Under pre-existing law (Cal. Labor Code 1030 et seq.), employers were required to make reasonable efforts to provide a private location, other than a bathroom, in close proximity to the employee’s work area, for employees to express milk in private and to provide…
A new California law requires large insurers to report on the demographics of their governing boards and the amounts they spend with businesses owned by minorities, women, LGBT individuals, veterans, and disabled veterans. Under the new law, Senate Bill 534 (SB 534), reporting will be required on a biennial basis beginning on July 1, 2020. SB 534 permanently replaces and expands on the required disclosures under a previous law that expired on January 1, 2019.…