What are the legal implications of quitting your job? Can you collect unemployment? Severance? What if you have a case and you quit (vs letting them fire you), will you still be able to take action? I answer all of those questions in this video.
My office gets a lot of calls from people who quit and still want to take action. This video details the critical things that lawyers look at in this situation.
As with all things in life, making a complaint at work is a risk. If you complain to human resources the wrong way, you might get fired (it happens far more often than people think). That is why I took the time to make a video about the correct way to complain to HR.
This video will explain the five things you need to know before you complain about your issue at work. It also covers how HR will react to your complaint and what you should expect if they conduct an “investigation.”
If you found this video to be helpful, please leave a comment below!
I’m an employment lawyer. My office gets thousands of calls a year from employees. I talk to other lawyers everyday who do what I do. And I’ve realized that human resources does a terrible job helping their employees.
This video dives deep into HR and why, even if they want to help you, they largely can’t. I spend a lot of time detailing the five reasons HR sucks.
So why is HR so bad at helping humans? Here is why:
If you found this to be helpful, please leave a comment below.
This is a very common question. At-will employment does not mean that the company can fire you for any reason they want. That is incorrect. In this video, employment attorney Branigan Robertson explains the at-will doctrine and how it actually works.
The year 2019 is shaping up to be a good year for workers in California. Several laws have gone into effect that benefit workers’ rights. Perhaps spurred on by the frustrations voiced during the MeToo movement, many of these laws strengthen existing laws dealing with sexual harassment and discrimination. Additionally, there is a raise in the minimum wage as well as overtime pay for agricultural workers.
This article will briefly discuss some of the new changes to California employment law. If you have questions about any of these changes, or you feel you’ve been the target of harassment or some other employment violation, contact our office to schedule a consultation.
The Changes, a Brief List
One – Minimum wage increase – This year, the minimum wage in California has been bumped for companies with 25 or more workers from $11 per hour to $12 per hour. Companies with fewer workers will now be required to pay their employees $10.50 per hour.
Two – Criminal History and Employment Applications – A new senate bill clarifies existing law dealing with job applicants who have criminal histories. Under current law, employers are prohibited from basing hiring decisions on a job applicant’s conviction record if that conviction has been sealed, or dismissed. There are exceptions to this law, such as if the applicant would be required to carry a firearm as part of the job.
In some cases, the employer is legally required to inquire about certain criminal histories. The new law limits these inquiries to “particular convictions” as opposed to convictions in general. A particular conviction is defined under the new law as “a conviction for specific criminal conduct or a category of criminal offenses prescribed by any federal law, federal regulation, or state law that contains requirements, exclusions or both, expressly based on that specific criminal conduct or category of criminal offenses.
The purpose of this law is to prevent companies from being overzealous when required to look into an applicant’s past criminal history.
Three – Settlement Agreements and Sexual Harassment Disclosure– Lawsuit settlement agreements can no longer include provisions that prevent sexual harassment victims from disclosing factual information regarding their experiences. This means that if an employee settles a lawsuit with a company after experiencing harassment, he or she will be free to testify about this experience.
While the harassed person will be free to discuss the factual circumstances of the harassment, the actual settlement amount can still be kept secret by a non-disclosure clause. However, the law allows for settlement provisions that shield the identity of the sexually-harassed victim.
Four – Defamation Protection– It used to be that employees who had experienced sexual harassment and reported it could be exposed to a defamation suit. Thanks to Assembly Bill 2770, allegations of sexual harassment based on credible evidence and without malice are protected from such liability.
Five – Mandatory Sexual Harassment Training– While mandatory sexual harassment training has been in effect for years, it’s only applied to companies with 50 or more employees. The updated law has been broadened to include businesses with as few as five employees. Every two years, employees will be required to go through training. This includes one hour for non-supervisory staff, and two hours for supervisors.
Six – Agricultural Workers to Get Overtime – Prior to the passage of this law, agricultural workers were exempt from California’s overtime rules. Assembly bill 1066 will change this in phases over a period of four years. Among the immediate provisions of the law, workers who toil for more than nine and a half hours in one day (or more than 55 hours a week) must be paid time and a half for their overtime work.
By the year 2022, the law will require that agricultural workers putting in more than 12 hours in a day be paid at least double their normal hourly rate. Additionally, persons working more than eight hours a day (more than 40 hours a week) must be paid time and a half.
Seven – Females on Boards of Directors – California law now requires that publicly-held companies with executive offices in California have at least one female director on the board.
Eight – Breastfeeding at Work – Employers are now required to make reasonable requirements to provide rooms for breastfeeding that aren’t bathrooms.
Have Questions? – Ask an Employment Attorney
The changes to the laws discussed on this page only scratch the surface. Each law contains nuance, and most workers dealing with a bad employer require the help of a good lawyer to seek justice.
If you believe your rights as an employee have been violated, it’s recommended you talk to a lawyer sooner than later. California’s statutes of limitation mean that a person filing a claim against an employer is always fighting the clock.
Having a good lawyer on your side might mean the difference between a check or a fair settlement for your pain and suffering. Whether you’ve dealt with wage theft, discrimination, harassment or some other employment related violation, a good lawyer will be indispensable in helping you get your life back on track. Call the office of Branigan Robertson with your questions and find out how we can help.
Attorney case law update – Summit Bank v. Rodgers (2012) 206 Cal. App4th 669. Branigan Robertson is a California employment lawyer who focuses his practice on wrongful termination. Call for a free consultation with one of our lawyers.
Summit Bank sued its former employee Robert Rogers for posting allegedly defamatory messages on a section of Craigslist entitled “Rants and Raves.” Rogers moved to strike the Bank’s complaint pursuant to California’s “anti-SLAPP” statute (Code of Civil Procedure section 425.16), on the ground that the suit was brought for the illegitimate purpose of chilling Rogers’s right to speak freely about the Bank. The anti-SLAPP statute protects acts in furtherance of a person’s right of petition or free speech in connection with a public issue. This includes any written or oral statement made in a public forum in connection with an issue of public interest.
Orange County Employment Attorney Update
The trial court denied the employee’s motion on the grounds that (1) employee’s statements were not protected by the anti-SLAPP statute because Roger’s underlying conduct was illegal (defamation); and (2) the Bank had shown a probability of success on the merits of its defamation claim.
Appeals Court Holding
The CA Court of Appeal reversed, holding that the anti-SLAPP statute barred the suit. First, employee’s statements were speech covered by the anti-SLAPP statute, and the financial code relied upon by the bank (which prohibited certain statements about a banks financial condition) was an impermissible content-based restriction on free speech. Employee’s statements on the blog constituted a public forum; and the financial condition of private banks constituted a public issue because of public interest in the heath of financial institutions as a result of the recent financial crisis.
Second, the Bank did not establish a likelihood of prevailing on its defamation claim because it is common knowledge that online blogs are noted for strongly worded opinions rather than objective facts. Objective facts constitute defamation, not opinions.
Please note that nothing presented on this website is legal advice. Every situation and every client's legal matter is different and this website is merely meant to provide information to the public. Nor does this website create an attorney-client relationship - such a relationship has not been formed until a signed fee agreement has been made. If you want legal advice or want to know if you have suffered a legal wrong in the workplace, contact our office.