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Spring 2015-1- IMPLEMENTING PAID SICK LEAVE

Download This Issue in .pdf Format July 1, 2015 (the effective date for the Healthy Family Healthy Workplace Act of 2014) is fast approaching and ALL California employers (with very limited exceptions) must be prepared to provide paid sick leave to ALL employees. Prior to the passage of this law paid sick leave was a discretionary benefit. Although employers can continue to provide paid sick leave that exceeds the requirements of the law, the basic requirements must be met for all employees. Basic Requirement All employees must be allowed to use up to three (3) paid sick days (or 24 hours) per year. Accrued sick leave can carry over to the next year, but the maximum required accrual is six (6) days. Accrual ALL employees must accrue paid sick leave as of the first day of employment, although the employer does not have to allow employees to use it until ... Read More

Spring 2015-2- CAL/OSHA CHANGES TO HEAT ILLNESS REGULATIONS

Download This Issue in .pdf Format The following is a summary of the changes in Cal/OSHA’s Heat Illness Regulations which are effective May 1, 2015. The Cal/OSHA Heat Illness Prevention Standard applies to all outdoor places of employment. Additional high heat procedure requirements are imposed on employers in certain industries. The Heat Illness Prevention Plan (if required) in your Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP) must be updated to reflect these changes. Water must be “fresh, pure, suitably cool and provided to employees free of charge” and is to be located “as close as practicable to the areas where employees are working.” The trigger temperature for shade to be provided has been reduced to 80º F. The shade that must be provided should “not deter or discourage access or use.” There must be enough shade for the number of employees who may be on a rest break, recovery period or ... Read More

Summer 2015-1- AMENDMENTS TO PAID SICK LEAVE LAW

Summer 2015-1- Amendments to Paid Sick Leave Law Last week the legislature passed and the Governor signed a bill amending the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014. Since the bill was passed as an urgency measure it is effectively immediately. The following are some of the key provisions of the amendments. To be eligible for paid sick leave under the law, an employee must have worked in California for the same employer for 30 or more days. An employer can limit an employee’s use of paid sick days to three (3) days or 24 hours in a year. The year can be measured based on a year of employment (anniversary date), calendar year, or any 12-month period. An employer need not use the one (1) hour for every thirty (30) hours worked accrual method as long as the method used provides for accrual on a regular basis and the employee ... Read More

Winter 2016-1- Changes in the New Year 2017

Download This Issue in .pdf Format The following is a brief overview of some of the changes in employment law (limited to changes in federal, California state law or the City of Los Angeles) which may affect you as an employer as 2017 begins: Minimum Wage – California minimum wage increases to $10.50 per hour on January 1, 2017 if you have 25 or more employees. [This increase will apply to smaller employers next year.] Marijuana Use – Even with the passage of Proposition 64 which legalizes use of marijuana in California employers may continue to prohibit use, possession or having marijuana in the employee’s system at any time while working. Drug testing can continue to include testing for marijuana. There is no requirement for the employer to allow marijuana use, even medical marijuana. It is suggested that policies prohibit all drugs for which use is prohibited or restricted under ... Read More

Summer 2018-1: Mid-Year Update

Download This Issue in .pdf Format The following is a brief overview of some of the changes in employment law (limited to changes in federal, California state law or the City/County of Los Angeles) in 2018 which may affect you as an employer: Independent Contractor or Employee? – In Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court the California Supreme Court adopted the broad definition of “employee” found in the California Wage Orders – a person who is engaged, suffered or permitted to work. The California Supreme Court also set forth the following “ABC” test for determining independent contractor status. The hiring entity must prove: (A) The worker is free from the control and direction of the hirer in connection with the performance of the work; (B) The worker performs work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business; and (C) The worker is customarily engaged in an ... Read More

Winter 2018-1: Get Ready for the New Year Update

Download This Issue in .pdf Format The following is a brief overview of some of the significant new legislation or other changes going into effect in California in 2019. Sexual Harassment –New California legislation will prohibit clauses in settlement agreements which prevent disclosure of factual information related to a sexual harassment claim. Any provision that waives the right to testify concerning alleged sexual harassment by the other party is also void and unenforceable. Additional legislation will make it easier for sexual harassment claims to be made as a single incident of harassing conduct may be sufficient to bring a case, the standard for harassment may not vary based on the type of workplace, and harassment cases have been deemed rarely appropriate for disposition by summary judgment. Employers with five (5) or more employees (or five or more contractors performing services) must provide at least two hours of training on sexual ... Read More

Fall 2010: New California Workers’ Compensation Regulations

Download This Issue in .pdf Format The California Division of Workers’ Compensation has amended its regulations. The following changes are effective October 8, 2010. PosterALL employers must post a new Notice to Employees to replace the current workers’ compensation poster wherever notices are normally posted – e.g., on the Company bulletin board containing required compliance posters. This Notice must also be posted in Spanish where there are Spanish-speaking employees. A copy of the Notice to Employees (in English and Spanish) that meets the requirements is attached to this Advisory. PamphletThe required language in the Written Notice to Employees concerning the rights, benefits, and obligations under California’s workers’ compensation law has also been revised. This Written Notice is generally referred to as the “Your Rights to Workers’ Compensation Benefits” pamphlet which must be given to all new hires. This notice must be provided in Spanish to Spanish-speaking employees. For most employers this ... Read More

January 2008: EIC

A. B. 650 – Notice of Earned Income Credit Rights – January 2008 – Download This Issue in .pdf Format • Employers must notify their employees that they may be eligible for the federal Earned Income Tax Credit. The notice must be hand delivered or mailed to employees within one week before or after, or at the same time, W-2 or 1099 forms are delivered. Note that employers cannot satisfy the new notice requirement simply by posting the notice on an employee bulletin board or delivering it through interoffice mail. • This notice must contain instructions on how to obtain any notices made available from the Internal Revenue Service for the purpose of obtaining the necessary forms to file for the EITC. • Every employer must process the Form W-5, at the request of the employee and in accordance with Federal law, for the advance payment of the Earned Income Tax Credit. ... Read More

Winter 2010: Topics of Interest for 2010 (Part 2 – Other Topics)

Download This Issue in .pdf Format Supreme Court CasesReverse Discrimination – The City of New Haven, Connecticut discarded the results of promotion examinations on which Caucasian and Hispanic candidates significantly out-performed African-American candidates, based on a potential adverse impact lawsuit by the African-Americans. The Caucasian and Hispanic firefighters then filed suit. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs stating that employers can only take such actions when there is “strong evidence” (not found here) that unlawful discrimination would occur. Employers are thus advised to carefully examine policies and practices prior to implementation to avoid claims of discrimination (or reverse discrimination). Anti-Retaliation Provisions – The Supreme Court found that when an employee communicates to the employer a belief that the employer has engaged in discrimination the employee will almost always be found to constitute action opposing the activity and give the employee protection from retaliation for having done so. This continues ... Read More

Fall 2011-4: Independent Contractors Misclassification

Download This Issue in .pdf Format IRS Voluntary Compliance Settlement ProgramThe Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has implemented a new program to allow taxpayers who have misclassified workers as independent contractors to voluntarily reclassify the workers as employees with minimal tax liability. This is a voluntary program. To be eligible, a taxpayer must have consistently treated the workers as non-employees; have filed all required Forms 1099 for the past three years; cannot currently be subject to an audit by the IRS, the Department of Labor (DOL) or a state government agency; and, if previously audited by the IRS or DOL on this issue has complied with the results of that audit. To participate in the Voluntarily Compliance Settlement Program (VCSP), the taxpayer must complete an application which will be reviewed by the IRS for verification of eligibility. The taxpayer must agree to prospectively treat the workers as employees for future tax ... Read More