The HR Specialist: California Employment Law

The EEOC is suing Dialysis Clinic Inc. in Sacramento, alleging that a nurse who had worked there for 14 years experienced discrimination after developing breast cancer.

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Generally, employees have to file EEOC discrimination complaints if they want to go to federal court with their claims. The EEOC eventually will issue a right-to-sue letter, giving the employee 90 days to commence litigation. But that can take years. If the employee waits to file a re­­lated FMLA lawsuit, she may be out of luck, since FMLA claims must be filed within two years of the alleged wrongful conduct.

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The idea behind arbitration agreements is that handling workplace disputes in arbitration instead of court is easier, less expensive and less time consuming. But don’t think that having arbitration agreements in place will automatically block lawsuits in federal court.

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Some employees behave in ways that create an unpleasant environment for their co-workers, subordinates or supervisors. There’s no reason to put up with bullies and other ill-behaved employees.

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The owners of San Francisco’s Lucky River Restaurant have agreed to fork over $285,732 to eight employees after DOL investigators found they hadn’t re­­ceived minimum wages or overtime pay.

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West Covina, Calif.-based G.M. Sager Con­­struction will pay $146,092 in overtime pay to 26 workers it failed to pay properly.

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A new decision may make it easier for employers to avoid some prevailing wage payments.

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Public employers have greater con­sti­­tutional obligations to their employees than private employers do. Public employers have to give employees some sort of due process before termination because a job is a protected property interest. Now a court is considering whether changing the terms of a PTO bank is also protected.

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A California appeals court has ruled that it’s up to the arbitrator handling a dispute to determine if the arbitration agreement allows class-action arbitration.

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OSHA has cited a Pasadena film production company for one willful and one serious safety violation for exposing employees to hazards that killed a camera assistant.

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