Li v. Department of Indust. Relations, 2020 WL 4814112 (Cal. Ct. App. 2020)

Fushan Li, the owner of four massage parlors in Lawndale, received three citations from the Labor Commissioner for violations of the state’s wage and hour laws. Citations ordering Li to pay a total of $198,576 in unpaid wages and liquidated damages were issued in 2017. After filing a petition for writ of mandate in the superior court challenging the Labor Commissioner’s decision, Li requested relief from Labor Code § 1197.1 requiring that Li post a bond based upon his alleged indigency. In opposition to Li’s motion for relief, the Labor Commissioner submitted evidence that Li and his wife transferred real property valued in excess of $370,000 to their children and that the children then quitclaimed the property back to Li’s wife; the Labor Commissioner also provided evidence that a massage parlor (owned by Li’s daughter) was still operating at one of the four locations where Li had previously conducted business. The Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment denying Li’s motion to waive the bond requirement.