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Cal/OSHA Proposes Workplace Violence Prevention Standards in Health Care

California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (“Cal/OSHA”) has made the Golden State the first in the nation to propose standards specifically aimed at protecting health care workers against workplace violence.

California Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses Fall to Lowest Level in 13 Years

The incidence of occupational injuries and illnesses in California remain at their lowest level in 13 years, according to occupational injury and illness data released by the California Department of Industrial Relations. The Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) data reflect a total of 460,000 reportable injury and illness cases in 2014, down from a total of 468,400 cases in 2013. In 2013 and 2014, the rate for cases involving lost work-time, job transfer, or restriction-from-duty cases (collectively, “lost work-time cases”) held steady at approximately 265,000, while cases involving days away from work fell from 146,800 to 142,800. Overall, the incidence of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses in California remains at its lowest level in the past decade.

Worker Misclassification Risk? Top 10 Questions to Ask about Your Independent Contractors

Employers’ risk of liability for the misclassification of workers continues to grow, as employee misclassification remains a top enforcement priority for the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”), and class actions asserting misclassification claims are filed almost daily in federal and California state courts. Employers regularly using independent contractors should examine those relationships periodically to ensure that the classification remains defensible.

Review of New Laws and Regulations Likely to Impact California Employers in 2016

Once again, the New Year brings with it new laws and regulations that apply to business in California. Thus, employers are encouraged to review existing policies and procedures, and consult with counsel to implement necessary changes starting on January 1, 2016.

California Supreme Court to Decide Whether Finding That UTSA Claim Was Filed in Bad Faith Can Revive a Previously Dismissed Malicious Prosecution Claim

The California Supreme Court’s recent decision to review the Second District Court of Appeals’ ruling in Parrish v. Latham & Watkins, 238 Cal. App. 4th 81 (2015) sets the stage for a potential sea change in the litigation of Uniform Trade Secrets Act (“UTSA”) claims, and could lead to an unsuccessful UTSA claimant being subject to a malicious prosecution action.

Sacramento Minimum Wage Increases

Anyone paying attention to national politics knows increasing the minimum wage is a hot topic being debated by employee and business groups. While the debate rages, the Sacramento City Council decided not to wait for the feds or the state to act, and recently voted 6-3 to increase the Sacramento city minimum wage, as follows:


The California Legislature recently concluded its legislative session, and a number of new wage-related bills signed by the Governor will significantly affect California employers. This article summarizes some of those laws below. We do not address laws specific to government employers, or to certain occupations or industries.


The only thing worse than being sued by a disgruntled former employee is to be sued later for refusing to re-hire the same employee. To avoid this situation, employers often require, as a condition of agreeing to settle a claim, that former employees agree to forego the right to seek reemployment in the future. Although these “no rehire” provisions are helpful in avoiding future litigation, employers should be thoughtful as to their scope. In fact, a provision that is so restrictive as to potentially bar a former employee from engaging in her chosen trade or profession may itself lead to litigation.

Why You Should Take a Closer Look at California’s New Piece-Rate Legislation

Employers doing business in California have seen a barrage of class actions and representative claims for various alleged wage and hour Labor Code violations. Some cases are premised solely on “technical” wage statement violations, where the employer may not have even realized the practice was occurring or was unlawful.

Filing of Police Report Accusing Coworker of Stealing Deemed Protected Activity by California Court

It is generally understood that an employer may not retaliate against an employee for “whistleblowing” and alerting authorities that a business has engaged in unlawful activity. Is an employee also protected against retaliation when he or she reports a coworker to the police for suspected theft of personal property? A recent California Court of Appeal published decision, Cardenas v. M. Fanaian, D.D.S., Inc., concluded that the California Labor Code does protect such activity.