On September 30, 2020 Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill 973 which requires large employers to report certain pay and other data to the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) by March 31, 2021 and annually thereafter. On November 2, 2020, the DFEH issued certain FAQs regarding this new obligation and announced that it anticipates
The following discussion concerns the California Fair Pay Act, and how to apply it. If you are unfamiliar with the Act, you may wish to begin by reading this blog.
I get calls from employers asking: “When I group my employees by substantial similarity of work, how do I know that I am doing it correctly?” These employers fear that someone – a Court, a plaintiff, or an employee – will come along and challenge the employer’s determination of who among its employees are engaged in “substantially similar” work.
The statute affirmatively requires employers to engage in that grouping. Unlike earlier equal pay act legislation, California’s Fair Pay Act puts the burden of proving compliance with the statute on the employer. Many employers are understandably concerned that their categorization of employees into groups of “substantial similarity” will be subject to criticism and attack.
The statutory language itself provides some relief to this anxiety. The section says:…
Continue Reading California Fair Pay Act Confusion – Understanding California Labor Code Section 1197.5
On July 19, 2017 Mayor Lee signed the Parity in Pay Ordinance. Below is a brief summary of the Ordinance which will go into effect on July 1, 2018.
- The Ordinance provides findings from the 2015 United States Census Bureau report that show that in San Francisco women are paid on average 84 cents for
Since the passage of the California Fair Pay act in late 2015 (effective January 1, 2016) and its recent amendments, many employers and commentators have criticized the statute for imposing a vague and dangerous standard on California employers.
The California Fair Pay Act replaces the former “equal work” standard of the Equal Pay Act with…
On October 14, 2015, the California Second District Court of Appeal held in Sharif v. Mehusa, Inc. that both the employee and the employer can be deemed “prevailing party” for purposes of recovering attorneys’ fees under the Labor Code. Plaintiff, Mahta Sharif, brought an action against her former employer, Mehusa, Inc., for unpaid overtime (Lab. Code, § 1194), unpaid wages (Lab. Code, § 201), and violation of California’s Equal Pay Act (Lab. Code, § 1197.5). She prevailed on her Equal Pay Act claim with the jury awarding her $26,300. Mehusa prevailed on Plaintiff’s overtime and wage claims. Plaintiff filed a cost memorandum and was awarded her costs. She also filed a motion for attorney fees in the amount of $280,432 under Labor Code section 1197.5(g) as the prevailing party on her Equal Pay Act claim. Plaintiff’s attorney fees request consisted of a lodestar amount of $140,216 and a multiplier of two. Mehusa filed a motion for attorney fees and costs under Labor Code section 218.5 in the amount of $36,982.24 as the prevailing party on Plaintiff’s wage claims. Mehusa estimated that 75% of defense counsel’s time was spent defending against Plaintiff’s unsuccessful wage claims.
Continue Reading There Can Be Two “Prevailing Parties” in a Single Wage & Hour and Equal Pay Act Lawsuit