Tag: California

California Supreme Court to Review Rest and Meal Break Case

Back in August, we reported a California Court of Appeals decision that employers must provide rest and meal breaks, but are not required to control that the breaks were taken.  Last week, the California Supreme Court granted review of that case – it might uphold the decision, but it might also overturn it.  The grant of … Continue Reading

Fourteen Million Reasons Not to Misclassify Employees as Independent Contractors

A class of current and former FedEx Ground drivers misclassified as "independent contractors" will receive an additional $9 million in reimbursements for employment-related expenses, an appointed referee ruled October 20.  This award will be combined with a previous award of $5.3 million the drivers received in 2006.  The award will reimburse the drivers for such expenses as truck … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Upholds San Francisco Health Care Ordinance

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently upheld a San Francisco city ordinance that requires many employers to either contribute a specified amount toward their employees’ health care costs on a regular basis or pay into a city health care fund for San Francisco residents.  The San Francisco Health Care Security Ordinance went into effect on … Continue Reading

Governor Schwarzenegger Signs Two New Employment Laws, Vetoes Many Others

California employers take note:  late last month, the Governator signed a few new employment laws, but vetoed many others.  Two bills are now law in California: A.B. 10, which immediately exempts from state hourly overtime pay requirements computer professionals earning more than $75,000 a year . A.B. 2001, which gives local governments authority to establish … Continue Reading

Governor Schwarzenegger Vetoes SB 1583

As previously reported in the Stoel Rives World of Employment, the California Assembly passed Senate Bill 1583, which would have made paid consultants who advise employers to treat workers as independent contractors to avoid employee status jointly and severally liable with the employer if it is determined the workers are not independent contractors.  The Governator … Continue Reading

California Bans Texting While Driving

Add "texting" to the list of things you may not do in California while driving.  As previously reported in the Stoel Rives World of Employment, on July 1 this year, California banned talking on a cell phone while driving (although talking on a hands-free device is still okay).  However, the California legislature forgot to add … Continue Reading

California Assembly Passes Four Employment-Related Laws

California employers take note:  The California State Assembly recently passed four significant employment-related bills that you should pay close attention to: Medical Marijuana:  A.B. 2279 would prohibit discrimination against an employee based on marijuana use, as long as the use was for medical reasons and did not occur at the workplace or during the hours of employment. … Continue Reading

California Drywall Contractor Settles Meal Break Case for $1.4 Million

California employers beware:  the state Attorney General is enforcing meal breaks and overtime laws.  This week, an Orange County drywall contractor agreed to pay $1.4 million in damages to employees who did not receive their legally required meal breaks or who did not recieve overtime.  To read the settlement in the case, California v. Interwall Dev. Sys. Inc., click … Continue Reading

California Employers Required To Offer, But Not Police, Meal and Rest Breaks

California employers scored a major victory regarding meal and rest periods as the result of a new California Court of Appeals decision, Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court.  Under the ruling, employers must provide meal periods by making them available, but need not ensure that they are taken.  To read Stoel Rives’ detailed synopsis of the case, … Continue Reading

California Paid Sick Leave Bill Dies in Committee

A California bill to provide universal paid sick leave died in committee last week, following intensive lobbying efforts from small businesses and their lobbyists.  The bill would have granted employees of small companies in California up to five days of paid sick leave each year, while workers at larger companies could take up to nine … Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Confirms Noncompetes Are Invalid

In a 7-0 decision yesterday, the California Supreme Court held that a noncompetition agreement signed by a former Arthur Andersen CPA was invalid under California law.   In Edwards v. Arthur Andersen LLP, the court reminded us that noncompetition agreements are invalid under California’s Business and Professions Code section 16600, even if they are written narrowly enough not to deprive persons … Continue Reading

Big Day at the Supreme Court: Four New L&E Decisions

Today the U.S. Supreme Court issued four labor and employment-related decisions; none, however, were big surprises or substantial changes in the law.  First, in Meacham v. Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory, the Court held 8-0 that an employer defending an Age Discrimination in Employment Act case bears the burden of proving a "reasonable factors other than … Continue Reading

Make Mine a “Venti”: Starbucks Ordered to Pay Baristas $105 Million

A California Superior Court ordered Starbucks Corp. to pay $105 million in restitution to baristas who were required to pool their tips with supervisors. Chou v. Starbucks Corp., Cal. Super. Ct. No. GIC836925 (Mar. 19, 2008). The class action case was brought on behalf of all baristas who worked at any California Starbucks going back … Continue Reading

No Individual Liability for Retaliation Under California FEHA

In a ruling that could simplify the defense of retaliation claims in California, the California Supreme Court recently held that there exists no individual liability for retaliation under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). Jones v. The Lodge at Torrey Pines P’ship, (Cal. Mar. 3, 2008). Although the FEHA prohibits discrimination by "an employer," … Continue Reading
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