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$15 Per Hour Minimum Wage? Los Angeles and Emeryville Give Seattle a Run for the Money

On May 19, 2015, the Los Angeles City Council voted, 14-to-1, to raise the minimum wage to $15.00 per hour in increments over the next five years. As a result, the city council will draft a proposal to raise the wage rate from $9.00 per hour to $15.00 per hour by 2020.

California Supreme Court Agrees to Consider Whether California Health Care Workers Can Lawfully Waive a Second Lunch Period

This week, the California Supreme Court agreed to review the decision in Gerard v. Orange Coast Memorial Center, No. G048039 (February 10, 2015), where the California Court of Appeal partially invalidated the Industrial Welfare Commission (IWC) wage order provision that allows employees in the health care industry to waive one of two required meal periods on shifts longer than eight hours.

Captain of the Cheerleading Team: An Employee Too?

On April 21, 2015, California’s legislature advanced a bill that would require professional sports teams based in California to classify their cheerleaders as employees and pay them a minimum wage. The state assembly’s Committee on Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism and Internet Media voted 5-to-2 in favor of the bill, which must now pass a vote by the Appropriations Committee before it can be reintroduced to the legislature.

Los Angeles Sets Path for $15 Minimum Wage

Los Angeles is on track to have one of the highest minimum wages in the nation.

Ten Tips To Comply With California’s Upcoming Sick Pay Mandate

Mandatory sick pay is coming to California in less than 60 days. Beginning July 1, 2015, the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014 (HWHFA) will obligate employers in California to offer sick pay to nearly every category of employee. The minimum obligation is to provide sick pay at the rate of 1 hour for every 30 hours worked or a lump sum allocation of 3 days or 24 hours per year. As the start date approaches, here are 10 tips to help ensure that your sick pay policy complies with the law:

The Trend Continues: Los Angeles City Council Tentatively Approves Citywide $15 Minimum Wage and Proposes Sick Leave Ordinance

On May 19, 2015, the Los Angeles City Council approved a proposal for a gradual establishment of a citywide minimum wage of $15.00 per hour by July 1, 2020. Once adopted, Los Angeles will join other large U.S. cities, including Chicago, Seattle and San Francisco, to establish local minimum wage ordinances that far exceed the federal minimum wage of $7.25. The State of California has already raised the statewide minimum wage to $9.00 per hour effective July 1, 2014, with an increase to $10.00 per hour set to go into effect on January 1, 2016.

California-Specific Webinar Highlights Pressing Handbook Issues

California employers face a host of unique employment law issues at both the state and local levels that must be taken into account when developing, implementing and enforcing employee handbooks. Littler Mendelson employment attorneys Chris Cobey and Ben Emmert, of the firm’s San Jose office, explored those challenges during a recent XpertHR webinar. After the webinar, Emmert provided answers to some key California-specific questions.

California Court Ruling Pulls the Spurs Off PAGA Deputies' Boots

Executive Summary: A new California appellate court decision provides much needed guidance regarding the proper scope of discovery in representative actions brought under the California Private Attorneys' General Act of 2004 (PAGA), Cal. Lab. Code sections 2698, et seq. Specifically, the opinion now allows lower courts to take an incremental approach to discovery, requiring the named plaintiff to demonstrate that s/he was actually subjected to wage and hour violations – and after that, subjected to uniform employment policies and practices – before authorizing statewide discovery. The opinion is the first published California decision concerning how courts should approach discovery in PAGA actions.

NEW ARBITRATION DEVELOPMENTS

California courts and the legislature generally disfavor arbitration agreements in the employment context. Employers with arbitration programs must be vigilant to ensure their agreements to arbitrate remain compliant with the law. Some recent developments in this area reveal a number of traps for unwary employers.

Court of Appeal Holds Truckers Entitled to Hearing on Whether Federal Arbitration Act Applies

The Federal Arbitration Act preempts state law that would preclude arbitration of claims. California has such a law, which prohibits arbitration of wage claims. See Lab. Code section 229. So, if the FAA applies, it preempts that law. The U.S. Supreme Court has so held.