Michael Kelly

Subscribe to all posts by Michael Kelly

California Wage and Hour Issues for Employers to Watch in 2023: Is My Time-Rounding System Still Compliant? (US)

Virtually every employer in California has repeated the mantra of “no off-the-clock work” to its employees. But what about those minutes that are “on-the-clock” but remain unpaid because of rounding practices? Since 2012, when the California appellate court decided See’s Candy Shops, Inc. v. Superior Court, 210 Cal. App. 4th 889 (2012), employers have presumed … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Holds Time Spent Logging On and Off Computers May Be Compensable Under FLSA (US)

Employers who have employees log onto computers before clocking into a time-keeping system and who have them clock out before shutting the computer down may be violating the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) according to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cadena v. Customer Connexx LLC. According to the facts in Cadena, employees had … Continue Reading

California Issues New Definition of “Close Contact” – Time for Tape Measures and Calculators (US)

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) revised its definition for what constitutes a “close contact” for purposes of Cal/OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS).[1] The revised definition will likely be good news for big box retailers, large manufacturers and warehouses. The rest of the state will remain bound by the existing standard.… Continue Reading

Gov. Newsom Extends California COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave Through December 31, 2022 – and Other COVID-19 Updates (US)

California Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law several more employment-related bills impacting an employer’s obligations relating to COVID-19.  Of particular note, Assembly Bill 152 extends California’s 2022 COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave through December 31, 2022. This means employers with more than 25 employees must continue to provide supplemental paid sick leave to employees for … Continue Reading

Lessons for California Employers from Viking River (US)

Last Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court waded into the complicated and controversial waters of California’s Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”).  At issue was whether pre-dispute arbitration agreements between employers and employees could be enforced to compel PAGA claims into arbitration – California courts had said no.  At stake is a huge loophole which … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Panel Reinstates Restrictions on California Employment Arbitration Agreements (US)

In October 2019, California enacted a new law, AB 51, that on its face prohibits mandatory arbitration clauses in employment contracts. As expected, the law was immediately challenged in federal court. In the latest installment of the law’s journey through the courts, a split Ninth Circuit panel vacated a 2020 preliminary injunction that had forestalled … Continue Reading

California’s COVID-19 Sick Leave: Expanded and Articulated (US)

AB 1867 was signed into law by Governor Newsom on September 9, 2020. The purpose of the bill is to eliminate gaps in coverage so that many more employee have access to paid sick days if they are exposed to or test positive for COVID-19 in 2020. This means that the new law applies to … Continue Reading

California Privacy Rights Act Makes it to the November Ballot (US)

As California employers continue to grapple with compliance with employee-related portions of the California Consumer Privacy Act, it is worth keeping an eye on a follow-on law, the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA), which now has enough signatures to be on California’s November 3, 2020 ballot. Of particular concern to employers should be the fact … Continue Reading

California Governor’s Order Creates Workers’ Compensation Presumption For COVID-19 Diagnosis (US)

As California employers prepare for the gradual re-opening of business, they must now take into consideration Governor Gavin Newsom’s Executive Order N-62-20 executed on May 6, 2020, making any COVID-19 infection diagnosed within two weeks of an individual working outside of their home presumptively work-related. This has the effect for employers of reversing the burden … Continue Reading

Santa Clara County Orders All Entities and Individuals Disclose Supplies of Personal Protective Equipment and Ventilators (US)

Santa Clara County, the heart of Silicon Valley, issued a new Health Order on April 8, 2020. [https://www.sccgov.org/sites/phd/DiseaseInformation/novel-coronavirus/Documents/order-04-08-20-ppe-disclosure.pdf] This order requires every entity and individual in the county to submit an inventory of qualifying quantities of certain Personal Protective Equipment (“PPE”) and Ventilators by April 15. The County has provided an online site to report … Continue Reading

US Department of Labor Publishes Regulations Clarifying Various Aspects of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (US)

Some questions answered, many still remain On April 1, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released new regulations (29 CFR Part 826), attempting to clarify certain provisions in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).  As we previously reported here, under the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act provision of the FFCRA, certain public employers and … Continue Reading

Staying Open in California (and Elsewhere) During Mandatory Coronavirus-Related Closures (US)

At last count, ten counties in Northern California have issued Health Orders dictating the mandatory shut down of all but “Essential Businesses”.  The Counties are Alameda, Contra Costa, Sacramento, Santa Clara, Marin, San Mateo, San Francisco, Sonoma, Monterey, and San Benito.  These Orders are substantially similar and, as drafted, specify numerous exceptions to permit Essential … Continue Reading

California Passes Slew Of Worker-Friendly Laws, Most Notably Banning Mandatory Arbitration of Employment Claims

California Governor Gavin Newsom just signed a new batch of worker-friendly laws sponsored by Democrats in the California Assembly and Senate.  These laws cover a range of topics from arbitration agreements to workplace safety. AB 51 will garner particular attention because not only does it substantially prohibit arbitration agreements, it criminalizes them.  The new law … Continue Reading

California Passes Sweeping New Law Limiting Employer Use Of Independent Contractors (US)

AB 5, and its “ABC test,” expected to have greatest impact in “gig economy” jobs, but impact certain to be even more widely felt After a summer of lobbying and debating, the California Assembly adopted AB 5, a headline-grabbing law purporting to transform the status of gig-economy workers at companies like Uber, Lyft, and DoorDash.  … Continue Reading

California Legislature Passes Bill Prohibiting Arbitration Agreements and Non-Disclosure Agreements Regarding California Employment Law Claims

On August 22, 2018, the California State Senate passed AB 3080, which, if signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown, would invalidate two types of commonly-used employment contracts that have been the subject of significant dialogue in the vast wake of the #metoo movement. First, the bill proposes to prohibit employers from requiring employees to … Continue Reading

Minutes Count: California Supreme Court Rejects De Minimis Doctrine for Wage Claim

On July 26, 2018, the California Supreme Court ruled in Troester v. Starbucks Corporation that the federal de minimis doctrine does not apply to a California employee’s class action wage claims.  This ruling will have widespread impact, particularly on those employers with large numbers of non-exempt employees such as retailers and food service providers, as … Continue Reading

California’s New “ABC Test” For Independent Contractors Is Anything But Elementary

On April 30, the California Supreme Court adopted in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court the so-called “ABC test” to determine whether individuals are employees or independent contractors for purposes of determining the applicability of California’s Wage Orders.  The Wage Orders govern important employment issues including California’s unique daily overtime regimen and its requirements … Continue Reading

Paid Family Leave On the Rise – California and New York State Both Set to Expand Benefits Starting January 1, 2018

Come January 1, 2018, employees in California and New York will enjoy new and expanded rights to time off work, with pay, to attend to certain family needs.  New York, whose law was enacted in 2016 (see our prior post here), boasts its law as being the nation’s “strongest and most comprehensive” on paid family … Continue Reading

California Latest State to Adopt No-Ask Law

On October 12, 2017, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a salary privacy law prohibiting California employers from seeking or relying on salary history information, including compensation and benefits, about an applicant for employment. Agents of the employer, such as recruiters, are also prohibited from seeking for this information. Further, upon reasonable request, employers must provide … Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Marshalls out More Plaintiffs’ PAGA Rights

On July 13, the California Supreme Court issued its long awaited decision in Williams v. Superior Court. The Court greatly expanded a plaintiff’s discovery rights in the early stages of litigation. For context, Marshalls of CA, LLC, a retailer with approximately 130 stores and more than 16,000 nonexempt employees, was sued by Williams under PAGA. … Continue Reading

California High Court Weighs In On Arbitration, Again

On April 6, 2017, the California Supreme Court issued its decision in McGill v. Citibank, once again striking out against arbitration agreements – this time declining to enforce a provision in a credit card account agreement which prevented the cardholder from bringing a claim for an injunction on behalf of the general public. The legal focus … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Expands Reach of Dodd-Frank Anti-Retaliation Protections

Adding to an existing split among the federal appeals courts, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled on March 8, 2017 that employees who make internal reports about suspected violations of the federal securities laws and other anti-fraud statutes are covered by the “whistleblower” protections of the Dodd-Frank Act (Dodd-Frank), even if … Continue Reading
LexBlog