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Tag: sexual harrassment

Three Labor Laws Every Employer Needs to Know

With unemployment rates hitting record-breaking lows and startups growing all around the Bay Area, companies in the Silicon Valley can’t fill roles fast enough. Whether you are planning to grow your team or hiring for the first time, our labor and employment attorney is an expert on the ever-changing laws. Here are three new employment laws to consider and tips for ensuring you are compliant:

  1. Salary History Ban – Per section 432.3 added to the Labor Code in October of last year, employers may not request salary history, nor may they base a salary offer on an applicant’s salary history. Before your candidate search, our employment lawyer can caution you on the crucial topics you can and cannot discuss during the interview process and throughout the tenure of your employee.
  2. Minimum Wage – According to MW-2017 which went into effect this year, minimum wage for companies with 25 or fewer employees is $10.50 an hour and for companies with 26 or more employees, it’s $11.00. Our labor law firm can help you not only ensure you are compliant with the most up to date minimum wage, but also how you can prepare for the slated increase to $15.00 an hour by the year 2023.
  3. Sexual Harassment Prevention – SB 1343 (an amendment to Sections 12950 and 12950.1 of the Government Code relating to employment) states that companies with 5 or more employees are required to train all employees on sexual harassment prevention by January 1, 2020. What exactly does a training need to include? What sexual harassment documentation does a company need to have accessible to employees? Our trusted employment lawyer is an expert on these requirements and here to help you ensure your company abides by the law.

Labor and employment laws change frequently, so we recommend all employers large and small, new and old, have regular legal consultations to remain lawful. To ensure your recruitment team and office space are set up for success, especially in Fremont, Hayward, Union City, Castro Valley, Milpitas, or Newark, CA, call Lynnette Ariathurai to schedule a consultation.

employment law, sexual harrassment, wage law

2019 New Sexual Harassment Laws

Beginning January 1, 2019, the California legislature adopted several laws in the workplace with regards to sexual harassment claims against employers. These laws will impact any employee claims that have not reached resolution, even though the cause of action, claim or lawsuit may have arisen prior to the implementation of the new laws. Staying up to date with the newest laws and implementing this knowledge correctly can save employers hundreds of thousands of dollars and countless hours in court. The most significant changes in the laws regarding sexual harassment are as follows:

1. SB 820 prohibits employer in a settlement agreement where sexual harassment, assault or discrimination has been alleged including a confidentiality clause prohibiting disclosure of the facts regarding the claim, except the victim’s identity.

2.  SB 1300 makes non-disparagement agreements preventing employees from disclosing the unlawful acts in the workplace, including sexual harassment, against public policy.

3.  SB 1300 also makes not enforceable, agreements not to sue or bring a claim against the employer under FEHA, in exchange for a raise or bonus, or as a condition of (continued) employment.

4.  SB 1343 states that all employers with 5 or more employees are required to provide 2 hours of sexual harassment training to its supervisor, and 1 hour to other employees within 6 months of hiring and every 2 years thereafter.  The initial training needs to conclude before January 1, 2020.

5. AB 2770 protects victim from claims of defamation by alleged harasser when employee reports sexual harassment based on credible evidence and without malice.  Even if the claim is found to be false and the accused’s reputation is ruined.

6. AB 2770 also permits an employer to reveal to prospective employers on a job reference, the reason for employee’s inability to be rehired – if the employer determined that employee had engaged in sexual harassment.

Staying up to date on current employment laws is the easiest way to protect an employer.  Often times employer thinks that just knowing the law is protection enough. My law office provides legal services in the best implementation of these laws, and dissolving confusion around the laws from the employers perspective. A consultation with an employment attorney can often save the employer time and peace of mind in regards to avoiding unnecessary litigation or tumultuous relationships with their employees.

I have represented a multitude of businesses in resolving claims against employers through pre-litigation, California and federal agencies, including the Labor Commissioner, EEOC and several others.

Litigation is sometimes the first notice of an allegation an employer receives, in which case a lawyer is even more pertinent and can be indispensable to that process. Every claim I have worked on has resulted in a satisfactory resolution for the employer, even in cases where initially there were stark differences in opinion. Settlements, although not always unavoidable, can be an option in which we can still reach a solution that satisfies the employer as well as discouraging future litigation from employees.

If your business is seeking information, guidance or protection for existing or possible sexual harassment claims in Fremont, Hayward, Union City, Castro Valley, Milpitas, or Newark, CA, please contact the Law Office of Lynnette Ariathurai.

california laws, employer responsibilities, sexual harrassment