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Employer Must Compensate for Time Spent Opening and Closing Stores

The California Supreme Court, in a unanimous decision, recently issued a ruling which held that employees must be paid for time spent opening and closing stores. The decision comes from a lawsuit filed by a shift supervisor who worked at Starbucks, who argued he should have been paid for the time spent after work closing

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Minimum Wage to Increase in Los Angeles County Effective July 1, 2018

All minimum-wage employees working in Los Angeles County should check their paychecks to ensure they’re getting paid properly.  Effective July 1, 2018, the minimum wage in Los Angeles County will increase from $10.50 to $12.00 per hour for employers who employ 25 or fewer employees, and from $12.00 to $13.25 per hour for employers who

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Recent Ruling Makes It Even More Difficult for Employers to Classify Workers as Independent Contractors

In a unanimous ruling on April 30, 2018, the California Supreme Court made it even more difficult for employers to classify their workers as independent contractors.  The decision in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County will have potential implications for companies such as Uber, Lyft and other app-driven services.  The ruling

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TENANT’S RIGHTS: Living in an Apartment With Toxic Mold

Healthy indoor air is recognized as a basic right in the state of California.  The quality of the air you breath in your own residence has a significant impact on your health and well-being.  The presence of mold in your rental unit can pose a significant health risk to yourself and your loved ones.  Accordingly,

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Tipping in Restaurants and Bars – Who Gets to Keep Them and Why

Under California law, every tip left behind for an employee is declared to be the sole property of the employee to whom it was paid, given, or left for. (Labor Code section 351).  In layman’s terms, the tip belongs to the employee, not the employer.  An employer may not deduct any credit card processing fees

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Los Angeles Jury Awards Former UCLA Oncologist $13 Million in Gender Discrimination Case

A Los Angeles jury awarded Dr. Lauren Pinter-Brown, a former UCLA oncologist, $13 million in a gender discrimination case on February 15, 2018 after it found that her complaints about disparate treatment due to her gender were valid.  Dr. Pinter-Brown alleged that she was forced to take another job after complaining about gender discrimination in

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Federal Civil Rights Law Protects against Employment Discrimination based on Sexual Orientation

While California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act protects employees against discrimination in the workplace based on sexual orientation, among other characteristics, the issue was not as clear in the federal forum until recently. A federal appeals court in New York ruled on Monday that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, a federal law

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Obesity May Qualify as a Disability under California Law

The California Court of Appeal recently ruled that obesity may qualify as a disability under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”).  Cornell v. Berkeley Tennis Club, 2017 WL 6524707 (Cal. Ct. App. 2017).  Ketryn Cornell was a severely obese woman who was fired from her job as a manager.  Prior to her termination, she received

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New Employers Can No Longer Inquire About Past Compensation

Effective January 1, 2018, employers can no longer seek or take into consideration a job applicant’s prior compensation and benefits when determining to hire the applicant, and in setting the applicant’s compensation and benefits.  The new law, which is codified in Labor Code section 432.3, specifically applies as follows: An employer cannot rely on salary

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