Department of Labor Revises Independent Contractor Test  |  By: Pooja S. Nair

On March 11, 2024, the U.S. Department of Labor’s (“DOL”) revised independent contractor test took effect, under a Final Rule issued by the Wage and House Division of DOL. The rule for Employee or Independent Contractor Classification under the Fair Labor Standard Act (“FLSA”) was published on January 10, 2024.

The Final Rule applies the following six factors to determine whether an individual is an employee or independent contractor under the FLSA:

(1) opportunity for profit or loss depending on managerial skill;

(2) investments by the worker and the potential ...


On May 31, 2024, Governor Gavin Newsom signed Senate Bill 828, delaying the implementation of the recently passed healthcare minimum wage law, SB 525, by one month, from June 1, 2024 to July 1, 2024.  The applicable law, SB 525, was previously passed by the legislature and signed by Governor Newsom in October 2023.  In recent weeks, it was determined state budgetary concerns have made it practical to delay implementation of SB 525 by another month.  Further, all future increases to minimum wage under SB 525 will occur on July 1st of subsequent years, rather than June 1st.

Q: I am a property manager for a receiver who is administrating a large apartment complex. The receiver has directed that I make certain repairs, but not others demanded by some of the tenants. Some of the tenants have threatened to sue me for not making the unauthorized repairs, for what they claim is shoddy work, and for disrupting the quiet enjoyment of their units, because of the authorized work. The receiver has told me not to worry, that I can’t be sued without prior court approval. While that may be true, what happens if the court allows such lawsuits? While I understand the receiver ...

Los Angeles County Enacts Fair Workweek Ordinance

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors recently passed the Los Angeles County Fair Workweek Ordinance (the “Ordinance”), which generally requires that certain retail employers in the unincorporated areas of the County of Los Angeles give workers their schedules two weeks in advance, compensate them for last-minute schedule changes and provide at least ten hours between shifts.  The Ordinance will go into effect on July 1, 2025, and largely duplicates the Los Angeles Fair Work Week Ordinance which became effective in the City of Los Angeles on April 1, 2023. The Ordinance ...

FTC Issues Nationwide Ban on Most Non-Compete Agreements | By: Catherine A. Veeneman

The Federal Trade Commission recently issued a final rule largely banning the use of non-compete agreements nationwide.  The stated purpose of the rule is to address the substantially increased harm non-compete agreements have caused to fair competition in recent years.  While several states, including California, already have similar bans in place, the FTC determined that a nationwide rule was necessary as the state-by-state approach did not adequately address the issue.

The FTC estimates that approximately 30 million workers are currently covered by non-competes.  By wiping ...

California Attorney General Office Issues Much Needed Guidance On “Honest Pricing” Requirements  |  By: Catherine A. Veeneman

On May 8, 2024, the California Attorney General’s Office released much needed and highly anticipated guidance on steps companies in California will need to take to ensure compliance with SB 478, California’s prohibition on “drip pricing” set to take effect on July 1, 2024.  These new guidelines are particularly helpful in detailing how companies in the hospitality and restaurant space can avoid running afoul of the new law.

As a reminder, SB 478, sometimes referred to as the “Honest Pricing Law" or the “Hidden Fees Statute”, revises applicable Civil Code provisions ...

Posted in The Real Dirt
Misconceptions About The California Financial Elder Abuse Act

According to the California Department of Aging, more than 200,000 older and dependent adult abuse cases are reported each year. Many more cases certainly go unreported.

Lawyers and clients often have the misconception that the California financial elder abuse statute, Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610, et seq., applies only where there is some bad faith conduct committed by an alleged wrongdoer defendant. This is not the case. In 2008, the Legislature replaced the “bad faith” standard with a different requirement to establish whether the defendant “knew or should have known of ...

Employer Alert: Workplace Violence Prevention Plans for California Employers Must be Established by July 1, 2024

As we previously reported, the California Legislature amended several statutes regulating employer workplace safety policies, including existing injury and illness prevention plans, to also include a new, separate requirement for a “Workplace Violence Prevention Plan.” With few exceptions, California employers must have such a plan in place by July 1, 2024. 

Cal/OSHA has promulgated an initial set of standards and a model template for such a plan, which can be found here. These standards must be submitted to the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (OSHSB) by no ...

Are IRS Claims Junior to Receivership Administrative Expenses?

Q: I was appointed receiver over a manufacturing facility. I operated it for a short time and then obtained court authority to sell it. I netted $1.4 million from the sale. The landlord agreed I could pay it the rent I owed from the net proceeds and is owed $600,000. All good, except I just learned the IRS is owed $1 million. I know receivers can incur personal liability if they pay creditors ahead of owed taxes. Do I have to pay the IRS ahead of my cooperative landlord?

A: No. What is known as the Federal Priority Act (31 U.S.C. §3713) mandates that representatives of insolvent estates, including ...

Previous Arbitration Agreements Are Potentially Unenforceable Against Re-Hired Employees

Despite its best efforts, the California Legislature has been unable to substantially curtail the popularity of employment arbitrations in California.  The hostility to employment arbitration remains evident, however, among the California courts.  This is illustrated by the recent decision of the California Court of Appeals in Vazquez v. SaniSure, Inc.

In Vazquez, an employee was initially hired by an employer for almost two years between 2019 and 2021.  During this period of employment, she was required to sign a binding arbitration agreement. The agreement provided that ...


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