Private Attorneys General Act Amended to Reduce Litigation

Effective upon signing, Assembly Bill 1506 amends the Private Attorneys General Act of 2004, commonly known as “PAGA”, in a manner that should benefit employers and employees alike and reduce lengthy litigation. Among other things, PAGA permits employees to bring civil actions for violations of California Labor Code section 226(a)(6) and (8), which require an employer to provide its employees with specified information regarding their wages, including the inclusive dates of the period for which the employee is paid and the name and address of the legal entity that is the employer.

However, under AB 1506, an employer may now cure any violation of paragraph (6) or (8) by showing that the employer has provided a fully compliant, itemized wage statement to each aggrieved employee for each pay period for the three-year period prior to the date of the written notice of the alleged violation(s). Per AB 1506, the employer must cure any violation within 33 calendar days of the notice, and may not avail himself or herself of the cure provisions more than once in a 12-month period for the same violation(s) contained in the notice, regardless of the location of the worksite.

In the event that the aggrieved employee disputes that the alleged violation has been cured, the aggrieved employee must provide written notice of the dispute to the employer and the Labor and Workforce Development Agency. Within 17 calendar days of the dispute notice, the LWDA shall review the actions of the employer to cure the alleged violation(s), and provide its decision to the aggrieved employee and the employer. The LWDA may also grant the employer three additional days to cure the alleged violation(s). If the LWDA determines that the alleged violation(s) has not been cured or if the LWDA fails to provide a timely decision, the aggrieved employee may proceed with a civil action under PAGA.

In short, this amendment enables an employer to expeditiously exit the employment litigation highway, while quickly remedying an employee’s harm. Sensible, right? We hope that the California Legislature considers similar amendments in the future.

This blog is presented under protest by the law firm of Ervin Cohen & Jessup LLP.  It is essentially the random thoughts and opinions of someone who lives in the trenches of the war that often is employment law–he/she may well be a little shell-shocked.  So if you are thinking “woohoo, I just landed some free legal advice that will fix all my problems!”, think again.  This is commentary, people, a sketchy overview of some current legal issue with a dose of humor, but commentary nonetheless; as if Dennis Miller were a lawyer…and still mildly amusing.  No legal advice here; you would have to pay real US currency for that (unless you are my mom, and even then there are limits).  But feel free to contact us with your questions and comments—who knows, we might even answer you.  And if you want to spread this stuff around, feel free to do so, but please keep it in its present form (‘cause you can’t mess with this kind of poetry).  Big news: Copyright 2015.  All rights reserved; yep, all of them.

If you have any questions about this article, contact the writer directly, assuming he or she was brave enough to attach their name to it.  If you have any questions regarding this blog or your life in general, contact Kelly O. Scott, Esq., commander in chief of this blog and Head Honcho (official legal title) of ECJ’s Employment Law Department, at (310) 281-6348 


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