California Workplace Law Blog

Insight & Commentary on California Workplace Law Issues & Developments

There are many employment law bills currently sitting on Governor Newsom’s desk, but back in July the Governor signed Senate Bill 657 (SB 657) to make a small change assisting employers with remote workers. SB 657 allows that in any instance in which an employer is required to physically post information, an employer may also distribute that information to employees by email with the document or documents attached. While this does not remove an employer’s…
A flurry of employment law-related bills are headed to Governor Newsom for consideration, however, no bills are being presented related to statewide supplemental paid sick leave. In March 2021, California resurrected and expanded statewide COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave.  The legislation sunsets on September 30, 2021, and there is no legislation pending to extend it. While the leave entitlement could be extended by the Governor by an Executive Order, there has been no indication…
On  September 23, 2021, California’s Governor signed Senate Bill 807 (SB 807), which makes procedural modifications to how the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) enforces California’s civil rights laws. The changes include modifying when and how the DFEH can appeal adverse superior court decisions regarding the scope of the DFEH’s power to compel cooperation in investigations and tolling the time the DFEH has to file a civil action while dispute resolution is pending.…
On September 22, 2021, California’s Governor signed Assembly Bill 701 (AB 701) which regulates the use of quotas at warehouse distribution centers in California.  The new law applies to large employers who meet industry definitions for General Warehousing and Storage, Merchant Wholesalers (Durable and Non-Durable Goods), and Electronic Shopping and Mail-Order Houses. AB 701 requires employers with large warehouse distributions centers to disclose quotas and pace-of-work standards to each employee upon hire or within 30…
For now, California employers are beholden to state and local COVID-19 requirements as well as Cal/OSHA’s infamous COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS). The ETS are set to expire on January 14, 2022. However, Cal/OSHA has recently released a draft of a semi-permanent standard for COVID-19. The current proposal would create a COVID-19 standard that would be subject to renewal or expiration after two years. Here are the key differences between the proposed standard and…
Employers may understand the workplace safety concerns surrounding wildfires, but there are other employment issues that employers should consider in the event of a wildfire near the worksite. The California Labor Commissioner’s Office has FAQs pertaining to important employment issues that employers should consider when their employees or worksite are impacted by wildfires. Regular Rate of Compensation A major consideration is handling compensation to employees impacted by wildfires.  If the wildfire causes a work…
After the announcement of President Biden’s COVID-19 Action Plan, employers across the country, including California started to consider how to implement vaccination and testing requirements, even ahead of clear guidance from the federal government. California already has its own Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS) which were amended in June by Cal/OSHA. However, currently, the California ETS does not mandate vaccination and the Cal/OSHA Standards Board has indicated it does not plan to amend the ETS…
While California’s Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) is often compared to class actions, many of the rules and regulations governing class actions are not present. And applying considerations like manageability to PAGA claims has caused California trial courts much consternation. However, recently the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District has provided some guidance. It recently decided on the issue of whether the trial courts have inherent authority to ensure that PAGA claims…
On August 31, 2021, Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill 26 (SB 26) which makes the provisions of the Fair Pay to Play Act (The Act) operative September 1, 2021, and makes the provisions applicable to the California Community Colleges. The Act, which was passed in 2019, allows college athletes to secure endorsements and sponsorships without losing scholarship eligibility and will generally provide athletes control over the marketing of their names, images, and likenesses. The Act…
Historically, California has experienced the most destructive wildfires in the months of September and October.  As we head into those months, employers should make sure they are familiar with California’s wildfire smoke standard.  Harmful air quality from wildfire smoke can occur anywhere in the state on short notice, so it is vital that employers prepare early. With some exceptions, the standard applies to workplaces where the air quality index is 151 (Unhealthy) or higher…