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Doug Larsen

California HR

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Changes to Credit Checks in California

Over the past few years there has been substantial debate about the use of credit reports for employment purposes.  Many foes of the practice have contended that with the bad economy, skyrocketing medical bills and other economic woes, many people have bad credit yet can be good employees.  They argue that disqualifying applicants with bad credit will keep many people unemployed. 

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The NLRB Issues a Report on Social Media Policies

Several hours ago, the National Labor Relations Board ("NLRB") posted a report describing the cases it has investigated regarding an employer's social media policies.  The report is very instructive and gives valuable guidance as to the NLRB position on the type of social media policies adopted by employers, and also on an employer's right to discipline an employee for his/her use of social media. 

Concerted Activities

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Meal and Rest Periods -- We're Still Waiting on the Supreme Court

In California employers must comply with many rules not found in other states, including rules related to meal and rest periods.  Several years ago the law was modified so that employers who did not provide a meal or rest period to employees were penalized.  The penalty, known euphemistically as a "premium" is calculated at one hour of the employee's wage.  In addition, the courts concluded that failing to pay the premium by the time the worker's employment terminated gave rise to wating period penalties -- calculated at the employee's daily rate of pay -- for up to 30 days.  Failure to pay

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A Pregnant Employee's "Secret" Emails Sinks Her Case

Consider the case of Gina Holmes, who sued her employer, Petrovich Development Company, asserting causes of action for sexual harassment, retaliation, wrongful termination, violation of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress.  (Holmes v. Petrovich Dev. Co., LLC 2011 DAR 671.)  Gina interviewed and was hired in June 2004.  In July 2004 she announced her pregnancy, her December 7th due date, and her intention to work until the due date, and take only six weeks of leave. 

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