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Helping You Navigate Workplace Issues in California

Got Labor Pains: The Blog


Calif. Restaurant Chain Settles EEOC Charges of Refusing to Hire Male Servers

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

Sex discrimination is illegal in California workplaces. Some people think this only means discrimination against women. But it can also apply to discrimination against men. In simple terms, a business owner can no more decide to hire only women for certain jobs than they can hire only men. Employer Will Pay Monetary Relief, Implement… Read More »


Opt-Out Provisions, Handbook Policies, and Arbitration Agreements: When Are Arbitration Agreements Enforceable Under California Law?

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

It is a common fact. Employment Handbooks can be lengthy. While employment handbooks can contain very valuable information for employees, such as appropriate workplace conduct and policies, some handbooks may also contain agreements for employees to be bound, like an arbitration agreement. If you are an employee who received an employment handbook with an… Read More »


Reducing Worker Misclassification: Independent Contractors versus Employees and what the Passage of AB5 Means for California’s Workers

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

Starting in January 2020, many California workers who are currently treated as “independent contractors” may become reclassified as “employees” under California law. This is due to the recent passage of Assembly Bill (AB) 5, which Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law on September 18. AB 5 codifies a 2018 California Supreme Court decision on… Read More »


Franchisor Liability: Federal Court Weighs in on the Definition of “Joint Employer”

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

When you are an employee working for a franchisee, determining who your actual “employer” is may be more difficult than it seems. Ninth Circuit: McDonald’s Does Not Exercise “Control” Over Individual Franchise Employees For example, if you work for a restaurant that is a franchise of a larger national chain, is the franchisor responsible… Read More »


“Why Can’t Your Wife Stay Home and Take Care of the Child?”: Asserting Your Right to Family Leave in California

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

Unlike many states, California state law provides certain “family leave” rights for eligible employees. Under the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), if you have worked for your present employer for at least one year, with 1,250 hours working hours during that year, and your employer employs at least 20 employees within a 75-mile radius… Read More »


Can I Be Fired for Reporting My Employer’s Illegal Actions to the Government? Understanding California’s Protections for Whistleblowers

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

So, you’re an employee who has found yourself in an ethical dilemma. You strongly believe – or maybe you know – that your employer is engaged in illegal activity. But maybe you’re worried if you report it to the appropriate authorities, or even file an internal complaint with management, so will lose your job…. Read More »


Getting Ready for the Workday: Do California Minimum Wage Laws Cover Time Spent Performing Pre- and Post-Shift Activities?

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

California law generally requires public and private employers to pay a certain minimum wage to employees “for all hours worked.” California Industrial Welfare Commission (IWC) wage orders provide “all hours worked” means “the time during which an employee is subject to the control of an employer, and includes all the time the employee is… Read More »


Does My Employer Have to Pay for My Work Uniform? Understanding California’s Labor Laws Regarding Employee Reimbursements

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

Section 2802 of the California Labor Code requires employers to reimburse employees for “all necessary expenditures” incurred “in direct consequence of” of the employee’s duties. For example, if an employer requires employees to wear a particular uniform, the employer must reimburse the employee for the cost of purchasing that uniform. Similarly, if an employee… Read More »


Time for Lunch: Employees’ Rights to Meal Breaks Under California Labor Law

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

While federal law does not require an employer to give employees any meal or rest breaks during the workday, California law, on the other hand, affords workers certain legal protections in this area. To be precise, Section 512 of the California Labor Code states that as a general rule, when an employee works more… Read More »


Ignorance Is Not a Defense: California Employers Are Liable for the Discriminatory Acts of Their Supervisory Employees

By Scott • Wagner and Associates |

National origin discrimination is strictly prohibited by federal and California state law. Employers are prohibited from firing, refusing to hire, or disciplining an employee or job applicant based on their country of origin or nationality. Nor can an employer escape liability simply by claiming it was unaware of any such discrimination on the part… Read More »

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