Religious Discrimination in the Workplace

Religious discrimination in the workplace involves treating a person (an applicant or employee) unfavorably because of his or her religious beliefs and/or treating someone differently because that person is married to (or associated with) an individual of a particular religion or because of his or her connection with a religious organization or group. California and federal law protects anyone who has sincerely held religious, ethical or moral beliefs. Additionally, the law forbids discrimination when it comes to any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, and fringe benefits.

Most employers are aware that they cannot discriminate against employees and applicants based on their religion. Where many employers are not so clear is their requirement to provide a reasonable accommodation to an employee’s or applicant’s “sincerely held” religious beliefs, unless doing so would cause more than a minimal burden on the business’s operations. Common religious accommodations in the workplace include flexible scheduling, voluntary shift substitutions or swaps, job reassignments, and modifications to workplace policies or practices.

Non-Competes in California

Generally speaking, employee non-compete agreements are unenforceable in California. But there are several exceptions to this rule; including the seller of a business’s goodwill or a membership interest in an LLC, and where the non-compete is necessary to protect an employer’s trade secret information. In our digital age, it is all too important for a…

Failure to Reimburse Employment Class Action

In California, where it seems that we are always on the road, there has been an increase in class action litigation against employers for the alleged failure to reimburse employees for business expenses, particularly mileage reimbursement.

For example, in a recent class action lawsuit involving prominent retailers, employees alleged that they were not reimbursed for mileage and other work-related travel expenses for:

Daily bank deposits;
Purchasing supplies for store events;
Required travel between stores to attend meetings;
Required travel between stores to provide staffing support; or
Required travel to transfer inventory.

CA Employees Bringing A Wave Of Employee Pay Lawsuits

In California, there has been a recent wave of cases brought by employee plaintiffs who claim their employers have underpaid wages and cheated them out of benefits. California state laws, in addition to federal laws, play a role in the legal standards an employer must follow when it comes to overtime and related entitlements.

Read on to learn about three cases that highlight the importance of employers’ maintaining an awareness of the nuances California and federal wage and hour laws, particularly when it comes to the issue of employee overtime pay.

CA Supreme Court Weighs in on Whistleblower Protection for Doctors

In a recent decision involving a Northern California hospital (Fahlen v. Sutter Central Valley Hospitals), the California Supreme Court unanimously ruled that a physician has the right to bring whistleblower lawsuits to challenge adverse peer reviews. In a world of online review sites and offline peer review team building exercises, the decision is likely to bring about a significant shift in the way that peer review of physicians plays out in the legal realm, and highlights the prudence of hospitals’ engaging legal counsel when conducting peer review proceedings.