July 21, 2017

By Gordon E. Bosserman

The California Legislature is considering amending the Fair Pay Act to prohibit an employer from asking about what a job applicant made in compensation from his or her previous employers. (See AB 168) This is not yet the law in California; currently, an employer may ask about previous compensation. Do you know what current law in California requires regarding “equal pay”? If not, here is a brief summary.

In 2016, California enacted the Fair Pay Act. Under that law, an employer was prohibited from paying any of its employees wage rates that were less than the …

March 16, 2017

Rental property owners and managers face strict laws intended to provide protections for tenants. There are three developments in California landlord-tenant law that you should be aware of if you own or manage any rental property.

First, AB 551 amends several sections of the California Civil Code to address bed bugs in rental properties. The most pressing amendment requires landlords to give a notice to new tenants containing particular language on and after July 1, 2017, and to give the same notice to existing tenants by January 1, 2018. The legislation also prohibits a landlord from retaliating against a tenant …

January 10, 2017

Review Your Rest Break Policy

By Gordon E. Bosserman
gbosserman
Right before Christmas, the California Supreme Court gave an early Christmas present to attorneys who represent employees by issuing a decision in Augustus v. ABM Security Services, Inc. that will make it easier to bring claims for missed rest breaks. Until now, attorneys representing employees have focused on meal breaks, because rest breaks are taken on the clock. So employers have been able to adopt policies that presume employees have taken rest breaks, since they are not recorded in their time records. As a result of this decision, employers are going …

November 17, 2016

kathyThe California voters’ approval of Proposition 64 may signal a big change in the direction of the “war on drugs,” but what may come as a surprise to some is that it does not change much for employers.

Marijuana remains a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act passed by Congress in 1970, and therefore is still considered illegal for any use under federal law. A person in California may now smoke marijuana and grow a small amount in his or her home without risk of arrest by California authorities, but this does not mean that employees can come …

October 31, 2016

karenBy Karen Gjerdrum Fothergill

Since their adoption in California in the 1990’s, limited liability companies have afforded individuals the limited liability protections of corporations without their stringent operational rules. Now, effective January 1, 2017, California Assembly Bill 1722 will amend California’s Revised Uniform Limited Liability Company Act to give even greater flexibility to members of California limited liability companies.

Under current law, if the members (owners) of a limited liability company want to dissolve and wind up its activities, they must have, among other things, approval by a majority of the members. A “majority” in this context means at least …

September 26, 2016

By Gordon E. Bosserman

gbosserman

A recent federal case has held that an employer did not violate the ADA when it failed to return an employee out on sick leave to a full-time position as a bookkeeper. This was a small employer who had replaced the position with a part-time bookkeeper under circumstances where the remainder of the former employee’s services were provided by a management employee.

A Court of Appeal in California has held that an employer who allowed one 20 minute rest break instead of two 10 minute rest breaks did not comply with California’s requirement (IWC Order No. …

July 11, 2016

By Gordon E. Bosserman

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In May 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor announced the highly anticipated Federal overtime rule changes under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Many employers have asked whether there is anything they need to do to comply with the new Federal rules. This is possibly the only time I will ever tell anyone that it is a good thing to be a California employer.

If an employer is already complying with Wage and Hour Laws in California, it is already complying with most of the new Federal rules. The one possible exception arises out of the “white …

June 9, 2016

kathyIf you think you’ve got problems managing minimum wage issues and changing laws, imagine what it’s like for a restaurant group with 1,850 locations –including more than 500 in California alone.

On Monday, June 20 at our annual Central Coast Business Symposium you can hear all about it – direct from Dan Sheehy, Cal Poly alum and controller of Panda Express Restaurant group, Inc., whose revenues top $2.7 billion. Dan will discuss how his organization is managing huge change, avoiding staggering penalties and fortifying itself in this most confusing arena. Even if you don’t have minimum wage employees, you should …

May 6, 2016

gbossermanBy Gordon E. Bosserman

I recently attended a seminar at which one session was devoted to workplace violence. This was timely, of course, because it came closely on the heels of the shootings in San Bernardino and only a year or so after the shootings at the Seal Beach hair salon. In California, an employer is required to provide a safe place to work. The employer must also, however, be careful not to reveal information about an employee or former employee that might be construed as defamatory, like warning a prospective employer that an employee was let go because he/she …

January 7, 2016

gbossermanBy Gordon E. Bosserman

Last year, the California Legislature was busy (as usual) adopting new employment laws and tweaking existing employment laws. What follows is a discussion of some of the laws that take effect in 2016 and which have impact on the way California employers conduct their business operations. It is not, however, an exhaustive look at all new or changed employment laws. Unless otherwise indicated, these laws become effective on January 1, 2016.

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Last year, the Healthy Workplace, Healthy Families Act was signed into law and required employers to begin providing the