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California Law


  • California affords employees the right to a meal period if they work five or more hours in a day. A compliant meal break requires: (1) That the employee is relieved of all work duties; (2) That the employee can take a meal period of at least 30-minutes; (3) That the employee can take a meal period no later than the end of the fifth hour of work; and (4) That the employee can take a second meal period no later than the end of the tenth hour of work. An employer that fails to provide meal periods compliant with these […]

  • Construction employers with worksites in the Central Valley should be aware of new Valley Fever training requirements for their employees. Under Labor Code section 6709, construction employers with worksites in specific counties must provide employees with yearly Valley Fever awareness training on or before May 1 of each year. Training must be provided if the “work activities disturb the soil, including, but not limited to, digging, grading, or other earth moving operations, or vehicle operation on dirt roads, or high winds.” The provision applies to construction sites in the following counties: • Fresno • Kern • Kings • Madera • […]

  •   January 2021 CDC Moratorium             On September 4, 2020, the CDC published an order (“CDC Order”) entitled “Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19.” The CDC Order was originally scheduled to expire on December 31, 2020. It was further extended through January 31, 2021. On January 29, 2021, CDC Director Walensky signed an extension of the CDC Order through March 31, 2021.[1]   State Moratorium             On August 31, 2020, the California Legislature passed AB 3088, also known that the COVID-19 Tenant Relief Act of 2020 (the “Act”) in response to the impact of the […]

  • January 2021 In 2019, the California Legislature passed Assembly Bill (“AB”) 51 which aimed to prohibit employers from requiring employees to sign mandatory arbitration agreements as a condition of employment.  The United Stated Chamber of Commerce and several large businesses quickly filed suit in federal court, arguing that AB 51 was preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”). In early January 2020, the court issued a preliminary injunction, holding that California could not enforce AB 51. California subsequently appealed the ruling, which is working its way through the 9th Circuit. The court’s injunction means that employers can continue to require […]

  • January 2021 Since March 4, 2020, when Governor Newsom issued a Proclamation of a State of Emergency, the State has been in a constant pattern of slow down, shutdown, ramp up, repeat. In addition to Governor Newsom’s emergency orders, most counties are establishing (or already have established) emergency procedures as well. This makes it particularly difficult for construction companies with projects in multiple counties to track emergency procedures such as training and reporting. The following provides a quick guide to construction site compliance based on California’s Assembly Bill 685 (“AB 685”) and how to prepare for potential shutdowns related to […]

  • January 2021 Employers big and small benefit from having detailed, updated handbooks.  Handbooks are a great way to communicate internal and mandatory policies. They can help employees find answers to many employment related questions. Handbooks can also help employers protect or defend against liability.  Mandatory Policies California mandates that employers develop and distribute certain policies to their employees. For example, employers must have written policies concerning discrimination, harassment, and retaliation prevention.  A handbook is an efficient way to distribute these policies and helps protect the employer if discrimination, harassment, or retaliation claims arise.  At-Will Employment A handbook is an effective […]

  •   December 2020 Out of state businesses with out of state employees may now be subject to California labor requirements under the recently published case Gulf Offshore Logistics, LLC v. The Superior Court of Ventura County. In Gulf Offshore, the Court held that employees were entitled to protections under California law because they performed all or most of their work in California, despite living outside of California and working for a Louisiana based company. The defendant company in Gulf Offshore was headquartered in Louisiana. The plaintiffs Gulf Offshore were “crew members on a vessel that provided maintenance services to offshore […]

  • December 2020 Changes to Home Improvement Contract Requirements in Effect January 1, 2021: New “5-Day Right to Cancel” Requirement for Contracts with Senior Citizens, New Construction Categories Added to “Home Improvement” Type Work and New License Classification for Residential Remodeling Contractors. As most contractors are aware, contracts for home improvement work must comply with unique requirements set forth in the Business and Professions Code (“BPC”).[1] BPC section 7159 identifies the requirements for home improvement contracts exceeding $500. Right to Cancel Home Improvement Contracts Extended for Individuals 65 Years of Age or Older from Three to Five Business Days. The changes […]

  • December 2020 LICENSED TO CONTRACT: A Reminder About Licensing Pitfalls for Contractors and How to Avoid Them James Bond, a.k.a. 007, was famously licensed to kill.  Without this license, Mr. Bond would have been in serious trouble with the authorities.  The same is true for a contractor. By performing construction work without a valid contractor’s license, a contractor is playing a very dangerous game and could lose it all.   It is well known that all contractors in California must be licensed by the Contractors’ State License Board (CSLB).  If a contractor is unlicensed at any point while performing construction […]

  • December 2020 One-Year Statute of Limitations Held to Apply to Disgorgement Under California Business & Professions Code § 7031 A recent decision by the Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District should draw the attention of contractors (as well as project owners and developers) statewide.  In Eisenberg Village etc. v. Suffolk Construction Co., Inc. (2020) 53 Cal. App. 5th 1201, the Court of Appeal ruled that the disgorgement remedy provided in Business & Professions Code § 7031(b) is a penalty and therefore subject to a one-year statute of limitations pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure § 340(a).  The Court […]