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Category Archives: Employment Law Notes

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July 2014 California Employment Law Notes

Posted in Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted July 2014 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: “Unauthorized Alien” Who Provided False SSN Can Proceed With Disability Discrimination Lawsuit Employee Was Properly Limited To Just One Theory Of Age Discrimination At Trial Male Deputies Prohibited… Continue Reading

May 2014 California Employment Law Notes

Posted in Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted May 2014 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Male Employee’s Sexual Harassment Claims Should Not Have Been Dismissed Employee’s Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Was Not Barred By Shortened Statute Of Limitations Court Should Not Consider Merits… Continue Reading

March 2014 California Employment Law Notes

Posted in Attorney's Fees, Class Actions, Collective Bargaining, Employment Law Notes, FEHA, FMLA, Harassment, Kin Care, Leaves of Absence, Overtime, Privacy, Retaliation, Sexual Harassment, Wage and Hour, Whistleblowers, Wrongful Termination

$150,000 Sexual Harassment Verdict And $680,000 Fee Award Affirmed Taylor v. Nabors Drilling USA, LP, 222 Cal. App. 4th 1228 (2014) Max Taylor worked as a floorhand on an oil rig where he alleged he was harassed by his supervisors who called him “queer,” “fagot [sic],” “homo,” and “gay porn star” and was subjected to… Continue Reading

January 2014 California Employment Law Notes

Posted in Employment Law Notes

TV Station’s Failure To Hire Weather News Anchor Was Protected By Free Speech Rights Hunter v. CBS Broadcasting, Inc., 221 Cal. App. 4th 1510 (2013) Kyle Hunter sued CBS Broadcasting for age and gender discrimination after it refused to hire him as a weather news anchor. Hunter alleged that CBS “repeatedly shunned him for numerous… Continue Reading

November 2013 California Employment Law Notes

Posted in Employment Law Notes

Employer Was Entitled To “Substantial Motivating Factor” Jury Instruction Alamo v. Practice Mgmt. Info. Corp., 219 Cal. App. 4th 466 (2013) In one of the first appellate opinions to consider the new jury instructions required for employment discrimination cases as set forth by the California Supreme Court in Harris v. City of Santa Monica, 56 Cal. 4th… Continue Reading

September 2013 California Employment Law Notes

Posted in Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted September 2013 California Employment Law Notes – a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Employer May Be Liable For Death Resulting From Drunk Employee’s Automobile Accident Prevailing Employer Entitled To Recover Its Costs In Discrimination Case Discrimination Claims Were Barred… Continue Reading

PAGA Claims Cannot Be Aggregated To Satisfy Jurisdictional Minimum Required For Removal

Posted in Employment Law Notes

Urbino v. Orkin Servs. of Cal., Inc., 2013 WL 4055615 (9th Cir. 2013) John Urbino alleged in the form of a claim under the Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (“PAGA”) that Orkin illegally deprived him and other non-exempt employees of meal periods, overtime and vacation wages and accurate itemized wage statements. Defendants removed the… Continue Reading

Bankrupt Employee Was Not Estopped From Prosecuting Undisclosed Discrimination Action

Posted in Employment Law Notes

Quin v. County of Kauai Dep’t. of Transp., 2013 WL 3814916 (9th Cir. 2013) Kathleen M. Ah Quin contends that her employer (the Kauai Department of Transportation) discriminated against her because she is a woman. While pursuing her discrimination action, Quin filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection and failed to list the lawsuit as an… Continue Reading

Judgment In Favor Of Commissioned Sales Representative Is Upheld

Posted in Employment Law Notes

Reilly v. Inquest Tech., Inc., 218 Cal. App. 4th 536 (2013) Peter Reilly sued Inquest under the Independent Wholesale Representatives Contractual Relations Act of 1990, Civil Code § 1738.10, et seq. (the “Act”), which was created to protect sales representatives who receive commissions from, but who are not employed by, a manufacturer. The jury entered… Continue Reading

Whistleblower Employee Must Exhaust Administrative Remedies Before Suing For Retaliatory Discharge

Posted in Employment Law Notes

MacDonald v. State of Cal., 2013 WL 4522792 (Cal. Ct. App. 2013) Aaron MacDonald worked for the State of California and the California State Assembly and was fired shortly after complaining that one of his supervisors was “illegally and/or inappropriately smoking” at the office. In response, MacDonald sued for retaliatory discharge in violation of Labor… Continue Reading

District Manager Was Properly Classified As Independent Contractor

Posted in Employment Law Notes

Beaumont-Jacques v. Farmers Group, Inc., 217 Cal. App. 4th 1138 (2013) Erin Beaumont-Jacques worked as a district manager for various insurance companies pursuant to a District Manager Appointment Agreement. After Beaumont-Jacques voluntarily terminated the relationship, she sued for breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and faith dealing, sex discrimination and… Continue Reading

Prevailing Employer Entitled To Recover Its Costs In Discrimination Case

Posted in Employment Law Notes

Williams v. Chino Valley Indep. Fire Dist., 218 Cal. App. 4th 73 (2013) Loring Winn Williams sued the Fire District for disability discrimination under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act. The Fire District succeeded in getting the case dismissed on summary judgment – after filing a successful petition for writ of mandate when the… Continue Reading

Discrimination Claims Were Barred By Statute Of Limitations

Posted in Employment Law Notes

Acuna v. San Diego Gas & Elec. Co., 217 Cal. App. 4th 1402 (2013) Esperanza Acuna filed three separate complaints against her employer (San Diego Gas & Electric) with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“DFEH”): One in March 2006 for racial discrimination and harassment and retaliation for filing a workers’ compensation claim; one… Continue Reading

Card Club’s Tip-Pooling Arrangement Did Not Violate The Law

Posted in Employment Law Notes, Labor Code Section 351

Avidor v. Sutter’s Place, Inc., 212 Cal. App. 4th 1439 (2013) Haim Avidor is the lead plaintiff in this putative class of current and former card dealers employed by Sutter’s Place, a cardroom/casino located in San Jose (“Bay 101″). Bay 101 required its dealers to contribute a set amount of the gratuities they received from… Continue Reading

Reporters’ Class Action For Unpaid Overtime Should Not Have Been Certified

Posted in Class Actions, Employment Law Notes, FLSA

Wang v. Chinese Daily News, 2013 WL 781715 (9th Cir. 2013) Plaintiffs (reporters for the Chinese Daily News) alleged they were non-exempt employees entitled to overtime pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and California state law. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the reporters, finding journalists are not subject to… Continue Reading

Employer Was Released From Liability In Settlement Agreement Between Employee And Third Party

Posted in Employment Law Notes, Third Party Liability

Rodriguez v. Oto, 212 Cal. App. 4th 1020 (2013) Heriberto Ceja Rodriguez sued Takeshi Oto for injuries he sustained in an automobile accident. Unbeknownst to Rodriguez, at the time of the accident, Oto was driving from an event related to his employment. (Oto was driving a car he rented from Hertz, the cost of which… Continue Reading

Employee Could Proceed With Whistleblower Claims

Posted in Employment Law Notes, Whistleblowers

McVeigh v. Recology San Francisco, 213 Cal. App. 4th 443 (2013) Brian McVeigh, a former Operations Supervisor for Recology, alleged Recology fired him in retaliation for his reporting possible fraud in connection with California Redemption Value payments made by and to Recology for recycled materials. McVeigh asserted claims under the California False Claims Act and… Continue Reading

Employee’s Wrongful Termination And Defamation Claims Were Properly Dismissed

Posted in Defamation, Employment Law Notes, FEHA, Wrongful Termination

McGrory v. Applied Signal Tech., 212 Cal. App. 4th 1510 (2013) John McGrory alleged his employment was terminated because he is male and because he participated in his employer’s internal investigation. He also alleged defamation associated with a statement the vice president of human resources made to another employee about why McGrory had been terminated…. Continue Reading

Sexual Assault Victim’s Motion To Strike Supervisor’s Defamation Claim Was Properly Granted

Posted in Defamation, Employment Law Notes, Sexual Harassment

Aber v. Comstock, 212 Cal. App. 4th 931 (2013) Lisa Aber sued her employer and two co-employees (Michael Comstock, Aber’s supervisor, and James Cioppa) for sexual harassment and sexual battery, among other things. Comstock filed a cross-complaint against Aber in which he alleged defamation and intentional infliction of emotional distress. In response to Comstock’s cross-complaint,… Continue Reading

Store Manager’s Disability And Harassment Claims Were Properly Dismissed

Posted in Disability, Discrimination, Employment Law Notes

Lawler v. Montblanc N. Am., LLC, 704 F.3d 1235 (9th Cir. 2013) Cynthia Lawler alleged disability discrimination, harassment, retaliation and intentional infliction of emotional distress (“IIED”) associated with the termination of her employment. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Montblanc, and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed, holding that Montblanc had… Continue Reading

Employee Who Exhausted Four Months Of Pregnancy Leave Was Entitled To Further Disability Leave

Posted in Employment Law Notes, FEHA, Pregnancy Leave

Sanchez v. Swissport, Inc., 2013 WL 635266 (Cal. Ct. App. 2013) In a case of first impression, the California Court of Appeal determined in this case whether an employee who has exhausted all permissible leave (four months) under the California Pregnancy Disability Leave Law (“PDLL”) may state a claim for failure to accommodate a disability… Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Revises Jury Instructions And Trial Procedures In Discrimination Cases

Posted in Employment Law Notes, FEHA, Wrongful Termination

Harris v. Superior Court, 56 Cal. 4th 203 (2013) Wynona Harris alleged her employment was terminated by the City of Santa Monica because of her pregnancy in violation of the California Fair Employment and Housing Act. The city claimed Harris had been fired for poor job performance – she had two preventable traffic accidents and… Continue Reading