Articles Tagged with Los Angeles employment lawyer

Now that there is a vaccine for COVID-19, an increasingly common question our Los Angeles employment lawyers are getting is whether employers can make employees get one. Los Angeles employment lawyer

The short answer is: Yes (probably). However, there are some caveats, and not all the relevant legal issues are clear-cut in this situation. What’s more, whether workplaces will actually fire workers who refuse probably depends on the employee’s industry, specific job, etc.

Guidance released by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission stated that employers can set forth a policy of mandatory vaccination if the need is job-related or if being unvaccinated would pose a direct risk to workers, customers or themselves. That’s an argument a whole lot of employers – from health care providers to grocery stores – could fairly make.

Still, there are likely two bases on which employees could object:

  • Potential exacerbation of an established medical condition or disability.
  • It goes against their sincerely-held religious beliefs.

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A bill aimed at empowering workers to come forward about employment discrimination and harassment was introduced in the California state senate recently. Specifically at issue are provisions of non-disclosure agreements many workers are compelled to sign when settling employment lawsuits or simply as a condition of employment. The Silenced No More Act would statutorily ban such provisions in settlements that involve cases of discrimination or abuse. Los Angeles employment attorney

Sponsor of the bill Sen. Connie Levya told CNN that it is unacceptable for companies to effectively place a gag order on workers who have been victims of discrimination, harassment or assault. The idea is not just to give these workers back their voices, but also to serve as a means of accountability against perpetrators and corporations that cover for them.

The measure builds on an earlier #MeToo era law called the STAND Act, which was passed three years ago. That law prohibits settlement agreements that bar workers from speaking up about employment sexual harassment and abuse. The SNMA would extend those prohibition to other forms of workplace discrimination and harassment, including those based on race, sexual orientation, religion, etc.

Employment Lawsuits Often Deal With Intersectional Problems

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Employment activists in California are funding an analysis by legal research and policy managers at UCLA Labor Center to ascertain how feasible it might be to pass laws requiring “just cause” for employee termination to replace “at will” employment – at least in some industries. New York state recently passed a law requiring fast food industry employers to have “just cause” before terminating employees – a major shift from the standard “at will” employment that gives employers the power to terminate any employee at any time – and for most reasons, so long as it isn’t discriminatory and retaliatory.employment lawyer

Requiring “just cause” could potentially shield workers from firings that are unfair, arbitrary or retaliatory. In the case of the New York law, fast food employers will have to have a good reason to fire a worker, prove it if the worker contests it and establish systems of progressive discipline for most terminations. There is hope (or fear, depending on your viewpoint) that this same type of law could be passed in cities with progressive worker protections, or possibly statewide in a place like California. Continue Reading ›

A number of new California employment laws will go into effect in January 2021. Employers should keep abreast of their responsibilities, while workers should maintain an understanding of their rights. Here, our Los Angeles employment attorneys break down some of the most impactful new measures pertaining to employee leave, pay, discrimination and classification.Los Angeles employment lawyer

AB 2399 – Paid Family Leave for Active Military Duty. This bill, signed in September and effective Jan. 1, 2020, extends the definition of Paid Family Leave under the state’s Unemployment Insurance Code to include coverage for active military members and their families. Previously, the state’s Paid Family Leave Program provides wage replacement benefits for workers who need to take time off to care for a seriously ill immediate family member or to bond with a new child right after birth or adoption. Now, the law allows for a qualifying exigency related to the active duty or call to active duty of one’s spouse, domestic partner, child or parent in the U.S. Armed Forces. Continue Reading ›

For nearly a quarter century, California has banned affirmative action programs that allow consideration of gender or race in public employment, contracting and university admissions. In the most recent election, California voters decided overwhelmingly to reject a ballot initiative that would have reversed this. Only one of the state’s 58 counties voted to approve Prop. 16, which was ultimately defeated by a margin of more than 2 million votes statewide. Los Angeles gender discrimination lawyer

As our Los Angeles employment attorneys can explain, that means that for now, California will continue to be just one of 10 states that bar gender- and race-based programming benefitting those well-documented to be at a disadvantage in these arenas. Continue Reading ›

A former employee of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI), the $80 billion philanthropic company Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg launched with his wife, pediatrician Priscilla Chan, has filed a complaint alleging racial discrimination. The worker, who is Black, worked for the company for two years, beginning in the fall of 2018.racial discrimination lawyer

The complaint alleges that while CZI speaks a big game of diversity and valuing employees of all backgrounds, Black workers are paid less, valued less, marginalized and denied opportunities within the firm. While non-Black employees are encouraged and supported in their advancement efforts, Black employees are slapped with an “aggressive” label and shut down. When Black workers expressed these concerns to superiors, the company responded defensively rather than accepting responsibility and trying to address the problems, the complaint alleges.

CZI is the company into which the Zuckerbergs have funneled 99 percent of their Facebook stock, to be used for charitable causes. In June, shortly after the death of George Floyd, Zuckerberg posted that CZI has given more than $40 million annually for a number of years to organizations committed to addressing racial injustice. Continue Reading ›

As we enter into the holiday season (no matter how different it may look this year than in year’s past), our Los Angeles employment lawyers decided this was a good time to review employer obligations for holiday pay, hours, time off requests and more.Los Angeles employment lawyer

The following are frequently asked questions pertaining to holiday work:

  • Is my employer required to give me time off for the holidays if I ask? Not in California. The only exception is a religious holiday accommodation (more on that later). Any time that you work on the weekend or a holiday will be treated the same as if you were working any other day. As noted by the California Department of Industrial Relations, your employer is under no obligation to give you paid holidays (though depending on the type of business, many do as an employment perk). Furthermore, your employer is not required to close its business on any holiday (though many do for select holidays, like Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve and/or New Year’s Day). Continue Reading ›

After nearly a decade of legal battles, employees for Apple received a ruling in their favor when the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit held that California’s minimum wage law entitles them to be paid for the time they spend waiting to be searched and being searched when they leave the retail store. Los Angeles employment lawyer

Our Los Angeles employment attorneys recognize this case could have far-reaching implications for employees in retail and other industries.

The class action case, Frliken et. al. v. Apple Inc., covers retail workers for Apple Inc. and was first filed in 2009. Key to the appellate court’s decision was the fact that Apple has a policy that requires employees who carry bags to work to undergo package and bag searches by supervisors or security staff at the end of each shift as a loss prevention method. Such actions are legal (so long as they aren’t applied in a way that is discriminatory) but employees can’t be expected to wait for and undergo these searches on their own time/at their own expense, the court ruled. Continue Reading ›

Issues pertaining to the legal workplace protections of LGBTQ workers are going to be entering the domain of the U.S. Supreme Court in the next several years. The good news is that most Americans believe LGBTQ workplace should be unlawful. However, at the time the annual GLAAD 2020 Acceptance Acceleration study was conducted earlier this year, most respondents didn’t realize it was still legal at the federal level.Los Angeles lgbtq employment discrimination lawyer

The good news is a landmark ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court has turned the tide decisively in the favor of LGBTQ rights. However, with a new conservative-leaning bend to the SCOTUS, it’s unclear what we can expect in future LGBTQ discrimination challenges.

Californians live in one of 23 states that have their own non-discrimination protections (under the California Fair Housing and Employment Act). But residents and workers in 27 other states lacked such protections formally.

As longtime advocates and allies for LGBTQ rights in the workplace, our Los Angeles employment lawyers think perhaps part of the dissonance between the majority of Americans who agree these rights are important yet didn’t know they existed (yet) is the notion that the SCOTUS ruling on marriage equality was somehow the finish line. In reality, we’ve still got farther to go. Continue Reading ›

A California employment lawsuit filed against the retailer Target alleges the company discriminated and retaliated against an employee with a traumatic brain injury (TBI) before wrongly firing him. TBI reasonable accommodations

According to the local CBS News affiliate in Los Angeles, plaintiff suffered from a brain injury, which he reportedly disclosed during the interview process. Despite this, his employer failed to provide him with reasonable accommodations. Instead, his supervisor constantly criticized his slow speed in comparison to other workers. He also alleges he was not properly trained with regard to job duties and expectations. He was reportedly harassed by his supervisor, and said the company failed to take action and later retaliated by firing him for being “full of excuses of why you are a slow performer.”

The worker is seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages. Continue Reading ›

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