September 26, 2016

By Gordon E. Bosserman


A recent federal case has held that an employer did not violate the ADA when it failed to return an employee out on sick leave to a full-time position as a bookkeeper. This was a small employer who had replaced the position with a part-time bookkeeper under circumstances where the remainder of the former employee’s services were provided by a management employee.

A Court of Appeal in California has held that an employer who allowed one 20 minute rest break instead of two 10 minute rest breaks did not comply with California’s requirement (IWC Order No. 1-2001; Cal. Code Regs., Tit. 8, Section 11010, Section 12(A)), which requires employers to provide a 10 minute rest break in the middle of work periods occurring before and after a 30 minute meal break, i.e., two separate breaks.

A Court of Appeal in California has re-affirmed the “one-way” attorneys’ fees recovery in certain Wage and Hour claims under the Labor Code, even where the employer prevails on the employee’s claim. Please note, however, that there may be ways to cap the employee’s fee recovery, even where he or she prevails, using other provisions of California law.

The Department of Fair Employment and Housing (the DFEH) recently published a brochure intended to familiarize employers and employees with their respective rights and obligations under the law relating to transgender persons. Please contact me if you would like a copy, or you can obtain the brochure directly from the DFEH.


In the last Employment Law Update, I made a mistake in calculating the yearly minimum pay required for an exempt employee under the U.S. Department of Labor Regulations taking effect on December 1, 2016. Such an employee must be paid at least $47,476 in annual salary, not the $43,824 erroneously reported by me. Thanks to those who caught the error and brought it to my attention. I am reasonably certain that the remainder of the information is correct, and the original blog has now been corrected.