California Employment Law Update

Tag Archives: attorney’s fees

January 2019 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted January 2019 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: School Teacher’s ADA Claim Against Catholic School Was Not Barred By “Ministerial Exception” City Attorney Should Not Have Been Disqualified From Representing City Prevailing Employer Should Not Have … Continue Reading

Employees Are Entitled To Additional Compensation For Shortened Meal Periods

Kaanaana v. Barrett Bus. Servs., Inc., 2018 WL 6261482 (Cal. Ct. App. 2018) The employees in this case (belt sorters who worked at two publicly owned and operated recycling facilities under contracts with Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts) alleged the employers’ failure to pay the prevailing wage and to provide full 30-minute meal periods. The … Continue Reading

March 2014 California Employment Law Notes

$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

California Further Restricts Employer Recovery of Prevailing Party Attorney’s Fees

California has amended Labor Code § 218.5 to limit the circumstances under which an employer may recover its attorney’s fees and costs as the prevailing party in a lawsuit in which an employee has sued for nonpayment of wages, fringe benefits, or health and welfare or pension fund contributions (SB 462).  Prior to enactment of Senate Bill 462, the prevailing … Continue Reading

Employer Is Entitled To Recover Its Fees As Prevailing Party In Reporting Time Pay Case

Aleman v. AirTouch Cellular, 209 Cal. App. 4th 556 (2012) Two members of a putative class appealed from a trial court order granting summary judgment against them. The Court of Appeal affirmed summary judgment on the ground that the employee was not entitled to receive reporting time pay for attending meetings at work because all … Continue Reading

“A Motivating Reason” Jury Instruction Is Upheld In Pregnancy Discrimination Case

Alamo v. Practice Mgmt. Info. Corp., 2012 WL 4450066 (Cal. Ct. App. 2012) Lorena Alamo sued her former employer Practice Management Information Corp. (“PMIC”) for pregnancy discrimination and retaliation in violation of the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”) and wrongful termination in violation of public policy. Alamo was terminated for poor work performance … Continue Reading

The California Court of Appeal Interprets The Applicability Of Reporting Time Pay And Split-Shift Premium Pay To Scheduled Training Meetings

The California Court of Appeal in Aleman v. AirTouch Cellular has addressed for the first time; (1) whether reporting time pay applies to training meetings which are scheduled in advance; (2) whether Split-shift premium pay should be paid if an employee earns more than the minimum wage for all hours worked plus one additional hour of pay … Continue Reading

Claim For Unpaid Vacation Benefits Was Properly Dismissed

Bell v. H.F. Cox, Inc., 2012 WL 3846827 (Cal. Ct. App. 2012) Oscar Bell and other truck drivers filed a putative class action against Cox, alleging wage and hour violations. Among other things, the drivers alleged that Cox had failed to pay promised vacation benefits to current employees (it paid them a flat rate of … Continue Reading

January 2012 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted January 2012 California Employment Law Notes – a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Insurance Claims Adjusters May Be Exempt Administrative Employees Attorney Was Properly Denied Precertification Discovery To Find A New Class Representative Employee-Attorney’s $440,000 Verdict Against … Continue Reading

Claims For Reporting Time Pay And Split Shifts Were Properly Dismissed

Aleman v. AirTouch Cellular, 202 Cal. App. 4th 117 (2011) Daniel Krofta and Mary Katz filed this putative class action against their employer, alleging reporting time pay violations and seeking additional compensation for working split shifts. Krofta sought reporting time pay for days he attended meetings at work even though he was furnished work (and … Continue Reading

$160,000 Sexual Harassment Verdict And Attorney’s Fee Award Of $677,000 Affirmed

Fuentes v. AutoZone, Inc., 200 Cal. App. 4th 1221 (2011) Marcela Fuentes worked as a part-time customer service representative (cashier) for AutoZone. Fuentes alleged that two managers (Melvin Garcia and Gonzalo Carrillo) had spread rumors that Fuentes had sexually transmitted herpes; that she and a coworker were engaged in a sexual relationship; and that she … Continue Reading

Employee-Attorney’s $440,000 Verdict Against LA Housing Authority Is Affirmed

Cordero-Sacks v. Housing Authority of Los Angeles, 200 Cal. App. 4th 1267 (2011) Ada Cordero-Sacks was terminated from her position as an attorney in the Los Angeles Housing Authority’s Office of Internal Control following her investigation of alleged internal misconduct and fraud within the Authority. Cordero-Sacks’s claim for retaliatory discharge under the California False Claims … Continue Reading

Employee Was Not Entitled To Indemnity For Fees Incurred In Defending Against Employer’s Lawsuit

Nicholas Labs., LLC v. Chen, 199 Cal. App. 4th 1240 (2011) Nicholas Labs sued its former employee, Christopher Chen, for breach of contract, conversion, negligence, money had and received, unjust enrichment, etc., after discovering that, while employed by Nicholas Labs, Chen had engaged in a business that made him a competitor of Nicholas Labs and … Continue Reading

September 2011 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly posted September 2011 California Employment Law Notes — a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law.  The highlights include: Employee Who Provided False SSN and Other Information Was Barred from Suing for Disability Discrimination Employer Did Not Violate CFRA by Transferring Employee upon Her … Continue Reading

Offer of Judgment for Full Amount of Class Rep’s Claim Did Not Moot Class Action

Pitts v. Terrible Herbst, Inc., 653 F.3d 1081 (2011) Gareth Pitts filed a class action against his employer, Terrible Herbst, Inc., alleging a collective action under the Fair Labor Standards Act for failure to pay overtime and minimum wages, a class action for violations of Nevada labor laws and a class action for breach of … Continue Reading

Reporters Were Entitled To Judgment In Wage And Hour Class Action

Wang v. Chinese Daily News, 623 F.3d 743 (2010) 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 the creative … Continue Reading

June 23, 2010 MCLE Telephonic Employment Law Seminar

On Wednesday, June 23, 2010, I will be speaking at the 2010 Employment Law Update telephonic conference sponsored by CEB.  It is always a lively and informative program, and I encourage you to enroll.  The program runs from 1:00 p.m. to 2 p.m. (Pacific).  One hour of MCLE credit is available. Details after the break.… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Approves Denial Of Employee’s Request For $871,000 In Attorney’s Fees

Chavez v. City of Los Angeles, 47 Cal. 4th 970 (2010) Over the course of six years, Robert Chavez, a Los Angeles Police Department officer, and his wife filed multiple lawsuits against the LAPD and other members of the LAPD, alleging a variety of claims involving discrimination, harassment and retaliation. In this particular lawsuit, Chavez … Continue Reading

Trade Secret Action Was Prosecuted In Bad Faith, $1.6 Million In Sanctions Upheld

FLIR Sys., Inc. v. Parrish, 2009 WL 1653103 (Cal. Ct. App. 2009) FLIR Systems purchased Indigo Systems, which manufactures and sells microbolometers (a device used in connection with infrared cameras, night vision and thermal imaging), for $185 million in 2004. William Parrish and Timothy Fitzgibbons were shareholders and officers of Indigo before the company was … Continue Reading

Employee Was Not Entitled To Punitive Damages For Labor Code Violations

Brewer v. Premier Golf Properties, LP, 168 Cal. App. 4th 1243 (2008) Christine Brewer, a waitress who had been employed at the Cottonwood Golf Club, quit her job and filed a complaint seeking damages for various alleged violations of the California Labor Code. After a jury trial, Brewer was awarded less than $1,000 for unpaid … Continue Reading

Employee Is Entitled To Recover Attorney’s Fees In Breach Of Contract Action Filed By His Former Employer

Profit Concepts Mgmt., Inc. v. Griffith, 162 Cal. App. 4th 950 (2008) Profit Concepts sued Greg Griffith, a former employee, for breach of contract and misappropriation of trade secrets in Orange County Superior Court. Griffith, who was an Oklahoma resident at the time, moved to quash service for lack of personal jurisdiction. (The contract contained … Continue Reading

Employer Entitled To Recover Its Attorney’s Fees In Discrimination Case

Villanueva v. City of Colton, 160 Cal. App. 4th 1188 (2008) After Daniel Villanueva was demoted from Lead Operator to Operator II, he sued the city for discrimination based on race, national origin, ethnicity or skin color and for retaliation for his having complained about the alleged discrimination. The trial court granted summary judgment to … Continue Reading
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