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New California Law Holds Employers Responsible For The Wages Of Workers Provided By Staffing Agencies And Other "Labor Contractors"

On September 28, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law AB 1897 (click here for a copy), adding Section 2810.3 to the California Labor Code. Under the new law, any business entity that obtains workers from a "labor contractor" (such as a staffing agency) shares - along with the staffing agency - all legal responsibility and liability for both (1) payment of those workers' wages, and (2) any failure to obtain valid workers' compensation coverage for those workers. The law defines "workers" as those employees who are not exempt from payment of overtime under California law (such as exempt professional, administrative, or executive employees), and defines "labor contractor" as any individual or entity (such as a staffing agency) that supplies businesses with workers to perform labor for that business's regular and customary work.

New California Law May Undermine The Benefits Of Privacy Commonly Associated With Arbitration Proceedings Between Employers And Employees

On September 30, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law AB 802 (click here for a copy). The new law applies to all consumer arbitrations commenced on or after January 1, 2015, and requires all private arbitration companies to collect, publish (on a quarterly basis), and make available to the public information in the form of a single cumulative report. The report must be available on the arbitration company's website, and in hardcopy form, and must contain all of the following information regarding every single consumer arbitration within the preceding five years:

Unpaid Volunteers and Interns Are Protected From Discrimination and Harassment in California

California's discrimination and harassment law has been expanded to include protections for unpaid volunteers and interns. Last week, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill expanding the protections which are afforded to paid employees to also include unpaid volunteers (see here).

New Law Expands the Training Obligations on California Employers to Include "Abusive Conduct"

Last week, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a bill that expands employer training obligations to include prevention of "abusive conduct" in addition to already existing law concerning training supervisors about harassment and discrimination (see here).

Under California Law, Employees Must Be Reimbursed For Personal Cell Phones Used For Business

According to an important recent California court decision, companies with either formal or informal "Bring Your Own Device" ("BYOD") policies - meaning that employees bring their own personal cell phones to work to double as work cell phones - are required under California law to reimburse employees for work-related calls that employees make on their personal cell phones.

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