Victory for California Employees

California-Employee-RightsLately, it seems like courts have all been jumping on the arbitration bandwagon, sending ever-increasing number of employee lawsuits to arbitration.  Courts have allowed employers to force all of their employees to arbitrate any claims against the employers and even allowed employers to use arbitration agreements to prevent their employees from filing class action lawsuits on behalf of wronged employees.

Regardless of employers’ overzealous attempts to restrict employee rights, however, advocates for employees have noted time and again that the law does not allow employers to force employees to arbitrate all of their claims.  In particular, California has a Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”) that allows an employee to stand in for the government in seeking to sue an employer for certain penalties for unlawful employment practicesContinue reading “Victory for California Employees”

Employee’s Appeal Reversed on Sexual Harassment Claim

In Westerndorf v. West Coast Contractors of Nevada, Inc. the Ninth Circuit recently reversed the lower Court’s summary adjudication of a Plaintiff’s claim for retaliation on the basis of sex despite the fact that it affirmed summary adjudication on the sexual harassment itself.

Plaintiff Jennifer Westendorf filed suit against her former employer West Coast Contractor for, among other things, sexual harassment and retaliation stemming from said harassment.  She alleged that during the course of her employment, she endured a number of “offensive sexual comments”. Continue reading “Employee’s Appeal Reversed on Sexual Harassment Claim”

Refusing To Sign A Warning Considered Misconduct!?

The Court of Appeal in Paratransit v. UIAB, tackled a common wrongfully terminated question for employees, can my employer fire me for not signing a written disciplinary notice? According the Court in the Paratransit case, the answer could be yes.

Craig Medeiros, the employee who was fired, was a union member. His negotiated union contract required his employer to obtain the signature of the employee being issued a disciplinary notice. The notices however, must include a disclaimer that states that the employee is only acknowledging receipt of the document. Continue reading “Refusing To Sign A Warning Considered Misconduct!?”

Pregnant Employees May be Entitled to Additional Leave

An employee who was disabled as a result of her pregnancy and had exhausted all leave under California Pregnancy Disability Leave Law (“PDLL”) and the California Family Rights Act (“CFRA”) was entitled to additional leave as a reasonable accommodation under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”), the California Court of Appeal has ruled in a case of first impression. Sanchez v. Swissport, Inc., No. B237761 (Cal. Ct. App. Feb. 21, 2013). Continue reading “Pregnant Employees May be Entitled to Additional Leave”

Yahoo Eliminates Telecommuting – Violation of ADA?

In late February of 2013, Yahoo! implemented a policy banning its employees from working from home (i.e. no telecommuting).  The official company stance in an internal memo was that “some of the best decisions and insights from hallway and cafeteria discussions, meeting new people, and impromptu team meetings” and “[w]e need to be one Yahoo!, and that starts with physically being together.” Continue reading “Yahoo Eliminates Telecommuting – Violation of ADA?”