Practical Issues with Implementation of Workplace Violence Prevention Plans
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Sahara Pynes and Cheryl Spound
6d ago
Now that California employers have their Workplace Violence Prevention Plans (WVPP) in place (as of July 1) some grey areas have come up that warrant awareness and discussion. Some employers have had the foresight to create a Dedicated Workplace Violence Hotline (with the help of IT staff), in advance of July 1 and were able to insert the number in their WVPP and training materials. This would satisfy the requirement under CA Labor Code Section 6401.9(c)(2)(F) of identifying procedures and having a system for an employee to inform/report hazards at the worksite or workplace violence concerns ..read more
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PAGA Reform: Everything You Need To Know
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Steven Gallagher
6d ago
The comprehensive reform of California’s Private Attorneys General Act is now the law. The PAGA reform (AB 2288 and SB 92) was a result of an agreement approved by Governor Newsom that removed the vote on the repeal of PAGA from the November ballot in exchange for the reform. PAGA is a vital issue to California employers because they often are victim of the plaintiffs’ bar seeking to impose unfair civil penalties for technical wage-and-hour violations. The PAGA reform attempts to strike the balance between the pain points of PAGA (and how it’s developed in courts) and the state’s interest in ..read more
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Junk Fee Ban Now Exempts Restaurant Surcharges
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Sahara Pynes
2w ago
A last-minute, emergency bill, SB-1524, was signed into law over the weekend by Governor Newsom. SB-1524 effectively modifies SB-478, the so-called junk-fee ban, which became effective today. As discussed, the exemption detailed under SB-1524 allows restaurants, bars and other food service businesses to continue to add mandatory fees (including service fees, surcharges and others) so long as the fee is clearly and conspicuously displayed. The law does not define where and how the fee disclosure must be made to satisfy the standard of clear and conspicuous. The remainder of SB-478 protecting ..read more
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PAGA Reform Deal In Place!
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Ketul Patel
3w ago
California’s legislative leaders and Governor Newsom reached an agreement on reforms to the Private Attorney Generals’ Act which will change the landscape of PAGA going forward. PAGA has cost businesses billions of dollars in penalties and legal fees over the course of 20 years. With the new deal, business group leaders have finally secured long-awaited reforms, including restrictions on the duration of filing claims, limits on damages, and a higher proportion of payouts allocated to workers rather than Plaintiff’s lawyers. The deal was announced in advance of the June 27 deadline in which a l ..read more
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June is Pride Month
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Nancy Yaffe
1M ago
I recently attended a superb webinar put on by two Fox Rothschild partners, Colleen McGarry and Brian McGinnis, with an update on LGBTQIA+ issues in the law. I look forward to their webinar each year to understand how the legal landscape is evolving on all types of gender related issues. One tool that Colleen and Brian have created is a glossary for companies and individuals to use as a resource to help gain fluency in the ever-evolving language relevant to the LGBTQIA+ community. I have been using parts of this glossary in my Sexual Harassment Prevention Trainings, to educate manager and sup ..read more
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California Supreme Court Holds Good Faith Defense Precludes Penalties for Wage Statement Noncompliance
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Steven Gallagher and Gabrielle Gordon
1M ago
In a significant victory for employers, the California Supreme Court recently held that if an employer reasonably and in good faith believed it was providing complete and accurate wage statements in compliance with wage statement requirements (Labor Code § 226), then it has not knowingly and intentionally failed to comply with the wage statement law. This reasonable and good faith belief precludes an award of penalties under Labor Code section 226, and takes one additional set of penalties out of the equation in wage-and-hour cases. This ruling, which affirmed the Court of Appeal ruling in Na ..read more
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Emergency Bill Introduced to Change Junk Fees
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Sahara Pynes
1M ago
Yesterday, Senator Bill Dodd, D-Napa, introduced Senate Bill 1524 which would keep restaurant fees legal so long as they present additional fees “clearly and conspicuously.” This bill would amend Senate Bill 478, detailed here, set to take effect on July 1st. SB 478 seeks to eliminate the practice of “drip pricing” – i.e., advertising a price that is less than the actual price a consumer will have to pay for a good or service – through the use of so-called “junk fees” so the price a consumer sees is the price they pay. To comply with SB 478, restaurant industry professionals were preparing to ..read more
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Court Makes it Easier to Sue Under PAGA
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Steven Gallagher
1M ago
PAGA lawsuits keep getting easier to bring—and one court just took it a step further. Employees no longer need to bring an individual PAGA claim to have standing to sue on a representative basis. Let’s first get a lay of the land: A PAGA claim consists of an individual PAGA claim and a representative PAGA claim. To bring a PAGA claim, an “aggrieved employee” must have worked for the alleged [company] violator and personally sustained just one Labor Code violation within the limitations period. In Balderas v. Fresh Start Harvesting, Inc., 101 Cal. App. 5th 533 (2024), the plaintiff sued her ..read more
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Think Twice Before You Contest Unemployment
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Nancy Yaffe
1M ago
It happens all the time. A poor performing, or even blatant policy-violating former employee applies for unemployment. The immediate reflex by most employers is to contest it. Good idea? Well, it really depends. If the employee has resigned, and you have a clear and unambiguous resignation letter, then sure. It makes sense to submit the resignation letter and contest it. But what if the resignation letter also says a bunch of stuff like: I resign under duress for the unfair treatment I have consistently been subjected to, my boss is abusive, I complained and was then harassed, etc. (you get t ..read more
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The Death of the Restaurant Surcharge
Fox Rothschild LLP | California Employment Law
by Sahara Pynes
2M ago
In March, Nancy Yaffe gave us an overview of SB 487, the new “junk fee” ban becoming effective on July 1st. As a refresher, legal requirements in California and across the country will soon change the way businesses must operate as the government seeks to eliminate the practice of “drip pricing” – i.e., advertising a price that is less than the actual price a consumer will have to pay for a good or service – through the use of so-called “junk fees.” As of July 1, 2024, businesses in California will no longer be allowed to add additional fees or surcharges to the advertised price for a good or ..read more
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