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Do CA Employers Have to Give Time Off for Religious Holidays?

The short answer is probably. No California law requires private employers to provide employees paid or unpaid time off for secular or national holidays (although many do), but when it comes to religious holidays, there’s a different legal landscape. Continue reading

Should Employers Use Progressive Discipline?

Employment in California is presumed to be terminable “at will,” i.e., employees can be fired for any reason (unless it’s an illegal reason) without warning. See Lab C §2922. This often comes as a surprise to employees who expect to get notice before their employment is terminated. That some employers adopt progressive disciplinary policies may make it even more confusing. Continue reading

Unlimited Vacation?

Some employers have stopped giving exempt employees a specific amount of vacation each year and have instead adopted “unlimited vacation” policies. This sounds like great news for employees, but it may actually be better news for employers. Continue reading

Yes, California Employers, It Really Is Time to Update Your NDAs

The following is a guest blog post by Tyler M. Paetkau, Hartnett, Smith & Paetkau, Redwood City, CA. Tyler represents employers in all aspects of employment and labor law, including counseling and litigation regarding trade secrets and unfair competition.

Now is a particularly good time for California employers to update and revise their agreements with employees respecting trade secrets and other confidential and proprietary information (NDAs), based on several recent, noteworthy legal developments. Review your NDAs and make these three changes. Continue reading

Watch Out for Probationary Employees Getting Implied Contract Rights

thinkstockphotos-537228660Employers often set up an “introductory” or “probationary” period for initial evaluation of new employees. There’s often a performance evaluation at the end of this period, and employers may believe they have every right to let an employee go if this evaluation is negative. But watch out: Unless employers take the proper precautions, probationary periods may create implied contractual rights to employment on successful completion of the probationary period. In other words, employers may be stuck with the employee despite a poor post-probationary period evaluation. Continue reading

Do CA Employers Have to Give Bereavement Leave?

thinkstockphotos-57563828When a death occurs in an employee’s family, does a California employer have to provide paid time off? The answer: it depends. Continue reading

What’s New in California’s Fair Pay Act, and How Employers Should Respond

ThinkstockPhotos-188094090Although prohibiting gender-based wage discrimination since 1949, California’s Equal Pay Act (Lab C §1197.5) was rarely used as a basis for litigation because its language made it difficult for an aggrieved plaintiff to establish a successful claim. But now that the legislature has amended it, §1197.5  may become more popular with plaintiffs. And employers get more clarity about what is and isn’t allowed.

Continue reading

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