California’s Coronavirus Response Statewide and Local August 7, 2020 The saga continues. After a month or more of eased restrictions, California’s “Statewide Public Health Officer Order”  (July 13, 2020) required all counties to close indoor operations for • dine-in restaurants, • wineries and tasting rooms, • movie theaters, • family entertainment centers (for example: bowling alleys, miniature golf,…

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California’s Updated COVID-19 FAQs Call for Careful Decision Making California employers must follow COVID-19 health and safety guidances including those from the federal Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the California Department of Public Health, and the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA). Employers with five or more on payroll must also avoid violating…

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California’s Employer Playbook For a Safe Reopening After four months of various degrees of “stay home,” “safer at home,” and “shelter in place,” California offers its Covid-19 Employer Playbook for a Safe Reopening (July 24, 2020), an attempted comprehensive “guidance” for limiting workplace infection as the pandemic wears on. “Guidance” suggests recommendations, not the direct force…

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Cautionary Tales Episode 36: IS GIG UP FOR CAR WASH COMPANY?

First AB 5 Suit Challenging Independent Contractor Classification The California Labor Commissioner has filed her “AB 5” first lawsuit — against Mobile Wash, Inc. of Bellflower, CA — for misclassifying more than 100 mobile car washers as independent contractors under the state’s “ABC” test. See, The Mystery of it All – Employed or Independent? California Offers…

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Expanded Federal Pandemic Guidelines Allow Favorable Treatment for Aged 65-Plus Personnel The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) June 17 update of COVID-related guidelines (June 17 Update) offers first-time protocols for the management of aged 65-plus workers in pandemic times under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). COVID-19’s unprecedented circumstances have led the EEOC…

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Cities and Counties Requiring Paid Sick Leave Above and Beyond Federal Limits The federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires most businesses with fewer than 500 employees to provide emergency paid sick leave benefits for workers affected by COVID-19. For example, covered employers must provide 80 hours of paid sick leave for full-time employees and two weeks of…

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Model Employee Handbook and Forms; COVID-19 Policies As many California employers welcome back workers laid off by pandemic conditions, best practices include ensuring policies and forms are up-to-date. We are daily guiding managers through this process with particular eye on sound COVID-19 protocols. Our model forms include: Pandemic recovery and prevention procedures; Paid sick leave…

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Supreme Court Removes Discrimination Protections for a Wide Range of Church-Affiliated Employees To a degree, the First Amendment shields religious institutions from government involvement in employment disputes. The U.S. Supreme has recently broadened that protection to potentially place hundreds of thousands of parochial school teachers and other church-affiliated workers outside the reach of workplace discrimination laws. Our…

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California’s Updated Coronavirus Response On June 28, 2020, Governor Newsom directed bars to close in five counties on the state’s watch list: Fresno, Kern, Kings, Los Angeles, and Tulare. These join two other counties – Imperial and San Joaquin – with bars already subject to such mandatory closings. The state has recommended bar closings in eight other…

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FFCRA Paid Leave Eligibility for Youth Program Closure The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) provides emergency paid sick leave and additional paid family leave for a worker who must care for his/her child due to  COVID-19-related school or other “place of care” closures. Would a summer camp closure qualify? Perhaps. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL)’s FAQs…

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