California’s new Ban the Box regulation became effective last week. Effective July 1, 2017, questions concerning an applicant or employee’s criminal convictions will now be subject to the new regulation that employers can locate here. That regulation raises the bar employers must clear in order to pose criminal conviction-related questions to applicants and employees. And it raises it significantly. We discuss the new regulation below.
As all HR professionals and employment lawyers know (even those currently living under rocks), the Department of Labor’s final overtime rule is scheduled to go into effect on December 1, 2016 – less than two weeks from now. The DOL published the rule back on May 18, 2016 providing employers with nearly 200 days to come into compliance. Many have planned accordingly and are ready to go; others are finally focusing on this issue as the deadline nears. At the same time, questions continue to arise over the rule’s fate. In this post, we discuss the current state of play along with some compliance tips for employers.
With Election Day just a week away(!), it’s important that employers familiarize themselves with their employees’ rights to take leave to vote. While there is no Federal law granting employees the right to voting leave, at least half the states provide this right in some form.
By Audrey Nguyen with Michael Arnold
California’s Fair Pay Act was already one of the broadest equal pay laws in the country. Governor Jerry Brown recently expanded it further by signing two laws that will go into effect on January 1, 2017. We summarize the expansion below.
By Michael Arnold, Brent Douglas and Audrey Nguyen
Beginning next year, employers may no longer force their California employees to resolve their employment-related disputes outside of California or use non-California law when doing so. With limited exceptions, the new law, codified at Labor Code Section 925, will be applicable to all employment agreements entered into, modified, or extended on or after January 1, 2017. The new law is yet another attempt by California policymakers to provide added protections to employees working in their state.
By Audrey Nguyen and Michael Arnold
California’s governor has signed into law a bill aimed at discouraging discriminatory age hiring practices in the entertainment industry. The law focuses on internet websites identifying ages, but critics question whether the law is constitutional and if it will have any real impact.
The obligation to accommodate a disabled employee is an ongoing one; a doctor’s note may not be a prerequisite to engage in the interactive process – those are two important lessons that employers should take away from a recent decision by a California Federal district court.
Last month, a California state appellate court issued a decision that, as the dissent characterized, went “where no one has gone before.” In Castro-Ramirez v. Dependable Highway Express, Inc., the court held that California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) – California’s anti-discrimination law – requires an employer to provide a reasonable accommodation to a nondisabled employee who associates with a disabled person. This troubling and broad interpretation of the law, which effectively would import a caregiver accommodation requirement into the law, has certainly captured the attention of employers even outside this jurisdiction.
California and New York have each passed laws that will gradually raise their state’s minimum wage rate to $15 per hour. This is a stunning development coming just four years after a small group of New York fast food workers initiated the call for the increase. The new laws will impact millions of Americans and put pressure on other jurisdictions and business to make similar increases in other parts of the country. We briefly break down the new laws below.
Beginning April 1, 2016, new California regulations (§11023 specifically) will require all California employers with more than five employees to have written policies regarding harassment, discrimination, and retaliation. For some employers, this may mean drafting a specific policy for the first time; for others, it may require some tinkering with an existing policy. Below we address the new regulations.