Employment lawyers anticipate that employers’ social media policies and their use of independent contractors will be hot button issues in the New Year, much like they were in 2012. Recently Mintz Levin’s Mitch Danzig spoke about social media, independent contractors, and the law with George Chamberlin, executive editor of the Daily Transcript in San Diego, CA. The video of their conversation also recaps the Daily Transcript’s Employment Law Roundtable.
It’s that time of year when we look ahead at the employment and labor laws that will go in effect in the New Year. My colleagues Mike Arnold, Kate Beattie, and Brandon Willenberg have assembled this forecast of the new laws that employers and human resources professionals in California, Massachusetts, and New York may need to comply with in 2013. Click here for more.
Online and Off-Limits: New California Legislation Prohibits Employers from Requiring Access to Social Media Accounts of Employees
We have written here about the practice of some employers to ask applicants for their Facebook login and password information, so they can have a “look around” as part of the interview process, and about Facebook's position on such requests.
My colleagues over at the Privacy and Security Matters Blog have weighed in, with an analysis of a new California la prohibiting employers from requesting or requiring access to social media accounts. For more information, click here.
California Employers Have No Duty to Ensure Employees Do Not Work During Meal Breaks: Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court
California employers, and employers with California employees, have been waiting for the California Supreme Court to decide Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court, regarding the scope of an employer’s duty to provide meal periods. The significant question before the Court,(among others that the Supreme Court addressed) was whether employers were simply required to provide meal periods to non-exempt employees or, as the plaintiff employee argued, ensure that non-exempt employees do no work during the required thirty-minute meal period. The California Supreme Court concluded that under IWC Wage Order No. 5 and California Labor Code Section 512, “an employer must relieve the employee of all duty for the designated period, but need not ensure that the employee does no work.”
We recently reported about the new California Wage Theft Protection Act (“Act”) that went into effect on January 1, 2012.
On December 30, 2011, the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (“DLSE”) published its "Frequently Asked Questions" (“FAQ”) regarding the new Act and its notice requirements. The FAQs incorrectly stated, however, that the Act’s required notice must be provided to all current employees, despite the fact that the new statute calls only for employers to provide the Notice to employees "at the time of hiring." The DLSE has since updated the FAQs, found here, which now correctly reflect that the new Labor Code § 2810.5 notice need only be provided to employees at the time of hiring and within seven days of a change in that information, if the change is not listed on the employee's pay stub for the following pay period.
The start of a new year often means new laws for California employers to follow, and new administrative burdens for them to bear. The start of 2012 will be no exception. Effective January 1, 2012, California employers must comply with California’s new Wage Theft Protection Act, Labor Code Section 2810.5. This new California law, which is similar to the New York Wage Theft Protection Act, requires employers to provide certain employees with a written notice containing the following wage-related and employer information:
California's DFEH Drops The Disability Discrimination Hammer - Largest Administrative Award In Its History
On September 12, 2011, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“DFEH”) announced its largest-ever administrative award of $846,300 (and no, that’s not a typo) against electrical supplier Acme Electric Corporation (“Acme”) for firing an employee, Mr. Charles Richard Wideman, because he had cancer.
Here is what happened...