Articles by: Jennifer E. Douglas

Employer Focused CARES Act Summary

While numerous summaries and reports on the stimulus bill enacted on Friday are circulating, the following are the key provisions in the CARES Act that will impact employers, and small employers in particular.  “Small” under the CARES Act includes all business of up to 500 employees in addition to the existing definition of small business […]

Employer’s Summary of Families First Coronavirus Response Act

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA” or “Act”) was signed into law by the President on Wednesday. Prior to the Senate’s vote to pass the law, the House made additional changes to the bill limiting some of the provisions related to paid leave that were required in the original version of the bill. The […]

Employer Guide to Navigating COVID 19

Below is an outline of topics designed to assist California employers in navigating COVID 19 and the related economic fallout.  Everything is changing quickly and this is based on what is currently known and available. Communications with Employees: Number one priority in this situation continues to be the safety of your employees. It is crucial […]

Communicating with Employees about COVID 19

It is important that employers stay on top of their employees’ workplace safety.  We recommend disseminating information to your employees about the COVID 19 outbreak and staying on top of developments. Below is a sample communication, but, of course, you should make sure it accurately reflects your workplace and the steps you are taking.  One […]

Legal challenges to 2020 Employment laws have begun!

As suspected, legal challenges have been made to both AB-51, which prohibits mandatory arbitration in employment, and AB-5, the new independent contractor test.  Below is a brief summary of the challenges and what it may mean for your business. Arbitration As of December 30, 2019,  California is prohibited from enforcing AB-51.  Mandatory arbitration is currently […]

Employment Update: New Laws for 2020

It is that time of year when we look to see what will change for California employers.  We have summarized some important changes to California employment law that may have an effect on your business as we enter the New Year.  There may also be local laws that are not reflected below. If you have […]

Wildfire Smoke Cal/OSHA Guidelines Apply to Indoor and Outdoor Employees Wildfire Smoke Cal/OSHA Guidelines Apply to Indoor and Outdoor Employees

Cal/OSHA issued an advisory to employers in California who may be encountering heavy smoke at worksites due to the wildfires. The Department of Industrial Relations and Cal/OSHA want to ensure that you have the information you need to protect your workers during this situation. More information is available on their website at https://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh/Worker-Health-and-Safety-in-Wildfire-Regions.html. For the most […]

New Sexual Harassment Training Requirement Delayed One Year

On Friday, August 30, 2019, Governor Newsom signed into law SB 778, clarifying requirements for mandatory sexual harassment training.  The bill is an urgency statute, which means it shall go into immediate effect.  The law can be found here. The key points of the clarifying statute are: All employers with five or more employees required […]

Uncertain Immigration Climate – What Can Employers Do?

Since the 2016 election there has been speculation of wide-spread immigration actions by the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”).  Repeated announcements from the President for “round-ups”, recent mis-match letters from the Social Security Administration (“SSA”) and court action concerning the census citizenship have many in the community on edge. While it is difficult […]

2019 Employment Law Update: Compliance in the New Year

Each January California employers have to ask themselves the question, what’s new in employment law?  2019 is no exception, as there have been a number of changes employers should be mindful of as we enter the New Year.   Here are some of the key changes affecting California employers this year: Salary History: Finally, the question […]

2019 Employee Payroll and Reimbursement Changes

The New Year brings change, and there is no exception for employers.  With the transition into 2019, it is time to take note of a few key changes that will affect how you pay and reimburse your employees.  There are other new employment laws that we will post about after the first, but these key […]

Is the De Minimis Rule dead in California?

On July 26, 2018, the California Supreme Court unanimously held in Troester v. Starbucks Corporation that California’s wage and hour statutes and regulations have not adopted the federal de minimis doctrine.  The de minimis doctrine is based on the Latin phrase de minimis non curat lex, which means “the law does not concern itself with […]

Supreme Court Upholds Arbitration Class Action Waivers

It’s official.  Class action waivers are enforceable in employment arbitration agreements.  On Monday, May 21, 2018 the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the enforceability of the waivers in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis.  The Court resolved a conflict between the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) as to which Act trumped […]

California Supreme Court Redefines Independent Contractor Analysis

On April 30, 2018, the California Supreme Court issued its ruling in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court, completely overhauling (but not overruling) the independent contractor standard previously set forth in the seminal case of S.G. Borello & Sons, Inc. v. Department of Industrial Relations (1989) 48 Cal. 3d 341. All businesses using independent […]

ICE Inspections – What Employers Need to Know After AB 450

With the recent news regarding ICE raids on 7-11’s across the country, rumors of raids targeted at Northern California businesses and California’s Attorney General announcing plans to prosecute employers for violation of new laws passed through AB 450, employers should have a plan in place in the event of a raid. As of January 1 […]

New Employment Laws for 2018

It is a new year, which means new employment-related laws.  Here is a quick look at the highlights: Minimum wage is $10.50 per hour for employers with 25 or fewer employees.  It is $11.00 per hour for everyone else. The new IRS reimbursement rate for business travel is 54.5 cents per mile, up one cent […]

Napa and Sonoma County Fires: Employer Resources and Obligations

In light of the devastating fires in Napa and Sonoma Counties, employers should be aware of some available resources and other obligations required by law. We have compiled some information regarding available benefits, employee pay, leaves, and other information Napa and Sonoma County employers may find useful, below. Unemployment Benefits Available   Disaster Unemployment Assistance […]

Important 2017 Employment Changes:

State Minimum Wage: $10.50 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees.  $10.00 per hour for those with 25 or less employees.  Cities throughout the state have higher minimum wages.  Consult local ordinances if employees regularly work in cities outside Sonoma or Napa Counties.  Note, exempt employees for employers with 26 or more employees […]

More Hoops: EDD Wants Employers to Report AB 1513 Safe Harbor Payments For All Past Quarters

Employers who paid safe harbor payments under AB 1513 are facing a new vexing, last minute challenge.  Although the payments were taxable wages to employees and former employees for the tax year 2016, the California Employment Development Department (“EDD”) recently issued a notice that employers who made these payments must report the back payments for […]

Alert: Court Denies AB 1513 Injunction – Safe Harbor Deadline Now July 28, 2016

Today, the Fresno County Superior Court denied Nisei Farmers League’s request for a preliminary injunction staying the enforcement of AB 1513’s affirmative defense deadlines.  AB 1513 is recent legislation specifying how nonproductive time should be compensated for employees paid by piece-rate.  The new deadline to file with the DIR is July 28, 2016. Under AB […]

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