Yau v. Santa Margarita Ford, Inc., 2014 WL 4198060 (Cal. Ct. App. 2014)

Eddie Yau, a service manager for Santa Margarita Ford, alleged he was terminated after complaining to his general manager and the owner of the Ford dealership that fraudulent warranty repair claims were being submitted to Ford.  Yau alleged that his termination implicated state statutes proscribing theft and fraud.  The trial court sustained defendants’ demurrers, but the Court of Appeal reversed in part, holding that Yau’s allegations were of sufficient “public” importance to support a claim of public policy violation – even though Yau “reluctantly complied” with the allegedly illegal directions of his supervisor when he signed warranty claims he believed were “suspicious.”  The Court of Appeal affirmed dismissal of Yau’s claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress on the ground that it was barred by the exclusivity provisions of the Workers’ Compensation Act.  See also Hager v. County of Los Angeles, 2014 WL 4078248 (Cal. Ct. App. 2014) (sheriff’s deputy properly obtained verdict in whistleblower lawsuit even though his may not have been the “first report” of wrongdoing, but evidence did not support $2 million economic damages award); Thomas v. County of Riverside, 2014 WL 4056546 (9th Cir. 2014) (lower court improperly disregarded evidence of multiple adverse employment actions that a jury might conclude deterred protected speech); Shaw v. Superior Court, 2014 WL 4102480 (Cal. Ct. App. 2014) (whistleblower asserting Health & Safety Code § 1278.5 claim is entitled to a jury trial); Van Asdale v. International Game Tech., 2014 WL 3973388 (9th Cir. 2014) (prevailing Sarbanes-Oxley plaintiffs are entitled to post-judgment interest at the rate set forth in 28 U.S.C. § 1961 rather than 26 U.S.C. § 6621).

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Photo of Tony Oncidi Tony Oncidi

Anthony J. Oncidi is the co-chair of the Labor & Employment Law Department and heads the West Coast Labor & Employment group in the firm’s Los Angeles office.

Tony represents employers and management in all aspects of labor relations and employment law, including…

Anthony J. Oncidi is the co-chair of the Labor & Employment Law Department and heads the West Coast Labor & Employment group in the firm’s Los Angeles office.

Tony represents employers and management in all aspects of labor relations and employment law, including litigation and preventive counseling, wage and hour matters, including class actions, wrongful termination, employee discipline, Title VII and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, executive employment contract disputes, sexual harassment training and investigations, workplace violence, drug testing and privacy issues, Sarbanes-Oxley claims and employee raiding and trade secret protection. A substantial portion of Tony’s practice involves the defense of employers in large class actions, employment discrimination, harassment and wrongful termination litigation in state and federal court as well as arbitration proceedings, including FINRA matters.

Tony is recognized as a leading lawyer by such highly respected publications and organizations as the Los Angeles Daily JournalThe Hollywood Reporter, and Chambers USA, which gives him the highest possible rating (“Band 1”) for Labor & Employment.  According to Chambers USA, clients say Tony is “brilliant at what he does… He is even keeled, has a high emotional IQ, is a great legal writer and orator, and never gives up.” Other clients report:  “Tony has an outstanding reputation” and he is “smart, cost effective and appropriately aggressive.” Tony is hailed as “outstanding,” particularly for his “ability to merge top-shelf lawyerly advice with pragmatic business acumen.” He is highly respected in the industry, with other commentators lauding him as a “phenomenal strategist” and “one of the top employment litigators in the country.”

“Tony is the author of the treatise titled Employment Discrimination Depositions (Juris Pub’g 2020; www.jurispub.com), co-author of Proskauer on Privacy (PLI 2020), and, since 1990, has been a regular columnist for the official publication of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar of California and the Los Angeles Daily Journal.

Tony has been a featured guest on Fox 11 News and CBS News in Los Angeles. He has been interviewed and quoted by leading national media outlets such as The National Law JournalBloomberg News, The New York Times, and Newsweek and Time magazines. Tony is a frequent speaker on employment law topics for large and small groups of employers and their counsel, including the Society for Human Resource Management (“SHRM”), PIHRA, the National CLE Conference, National Business Institute, the Employment Round Table of Southern California (Board Member), the Council on Education in Management, the Institute for Corporate Counsel, the State Bar of California, the California Continuing Education of the Bar Program and the Los Angeles and Beverly Hills Bar Associations. He has testified as an expert witness regarding wage and hour issues as well as the California Fair Employment and Housing Act and has served as a faculty member of the National Employment Law Institute. He has served as an arbitrator in an employment discrimination matter.

Tony is an appointed Hearing Examiner for the Los Angeles Police Commission Board of Rights and has served as an Adjunct Professor of Law and a guest lecturer at USC Law School and a guest lecturer at UCLA Law School.