The Sprouts Case: Employers And Phishing Scam Awareness

Business Law

The Sprouts Case: Employers And Phishing Scam Awareness

In 2016, employers face many risks and challenges in keeping employee information private and secure. As business owners are a particularly lucrative target, dealing with phishing attacks and maintaining absolute privacy are current daily challenges faced by employers. Employers must be constantly vigilant and aware of this type of fraud, especially since scammers and hackers use email, text messages, phone calls, and social media to steal data. In April of this year, former employees of Sprouts initiated a class action lawsuit in the United States District Court, Southern District of California against Sprouts Farmers Market, Inc. ("Sprouts"). Because of a... READ MORE

What Is Hip? What Employers Must Know About California’s Heat Illness Prevention (“HIP”) Regulation

The California Occupational Safety and Health Division issued a “High Heat Advisory,” warning employers to protect their outdoor workers from heat illness as temperatures went over 100 degrees in many areas of California. This should remind employers about the requirements of California’s Heat Illness Prevention (“HIP”) regulation, adopted in 2015. HIP sets specific requirements for potable water, shade, cool-down periods, high-heat procedures, emergency preparedness, and acclimatization, training, and plans for heat illness prevention. Pursuant to HIP, employers must Provide free water that is "fresh, pure, suitably cool" so that each employee may drink at least one (1) quart per hour.... READ MORE

City Of Los Angeles Passes Paid Sick Leave Ordinances

Due to apparent dissatisfaction with paid sick leave as provided at the California state level, the cities of Los Angeles and San Diego have passed ordinances granting sick leave to qualified employees. Employers should note that the permissible uses under both ordinances are broader than California law. As of July 1, 2016, many employees within the City of Los Angeles will be entitled to accrue 48 hours of paid sick leave per year. Los Angeles Ordinance The state paid sick leave law does not supersede local ordinances, and employers must comply with both the state and the local laws, whichever... READ MORE

What Employers Should Know About The California Data Protection Act

The California legislature passed the nation’s first data breach notification statute in 2003, the California Data Protection Act (CDPA). Since this landmark legislation was enacted, over 30 states have passed similar statutes. The law is another example of California's trendsetting legislation in the area of privacy. What the CDPA requires The CDPA requires that any business that “owns or licenses personal information about a California resident shall implement and maintain reasonable security procedures and practices appropriate to the nature of the information, to protect the personal information from unauthorized access, destruction, use, modification, or disclosure.” Further, it requires a business... READ MORE

Put It In Writing: Ownership Battles In Startup Businesses

In the world of startup businesses, especially those related to social media and technology, a common story unfortunately repeats itself. Individual buddies formulate a viable business idea and away they go with it, fast and furious into the business world with nothing memorialized in writing. Soon, the revenue is flowing and suddenly relationships sour, disagreements occur, and the fight begins over ownership of the enterprise. Billion dollar companies like Facebook, Uber, and Snapchat, all feature a similar set of events within the history of their existence. Technology companies grow rapidly in size and quickly gain financing, resulting in exorbitant amounts... READ MORE

I Thought We Won: Uber Settlement Unpopular With Plaintiffs

After reaching an $84 million settlement with Uber, Massachusetts'  attorney Shannon Liss-Riordan has found herself subject to immense criticism from Uber drivers and attorneys alike that claim the settlement is too low and a sell-out of their interests. At the end of June, U.S. District Judge Edward Chen of the Northern District of California issued an order stating that he still has insufficient information to approve the deal. The terms of the settlement would release a multitude of driver claims against Uber and thereby eliminate more than a dozen other pending cases in the process. Liss-Riordan settled the class action... READ MORE

Data Breach Risk Management For Business Owners

Today's article covers the relevant federal and state laws regarding the collection and sharing of personal information, as well as the notification requirements when data breaches occur in a public or private workplace. Federal Law The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (the "Act") requires qualifying financial institutions to explain their information-sharing practices to their customers and to safeguard sensitive data. The FTC Safeguards Rule under the Act requires financial institutions under FTC jurisdiction to have measures in place to keep customer information secure. Disclaiming guaranteed protection of customers’ information is not an acceptable measure, and therefore not a defense.  Qualifying businesses have a... READ MORE

About AB 1727: The California 1099 Self-Organizing Act

About ten percent, or 1.9 million, of California's 19 million person workforce consists of independent contractors. Non-union workers reportedly earn 20% less than their union counterparts in the current gig economy. Classifying workers as independent contractors has severe consequences for such workers, as non-employees generally have no statutory right to minimum wage, overtime pay, compensation for on-the-job injuries, unemployment insurance for involuntarily leaving employment, or protection against other illegal employer activities like discrimination. In the winter of 2016, a California Assemblywoman, Lorena Gonzalez, introduced AB 1727 aka The California 1099 Self-Organizing Act, an amendment to California's Labor Code. Gonzalez' intention... READ MORE

Employers Must Comply With New FLSA Salary Thresholds

California employers must be prepared to implement . Effective December 1, 2016, businesses that employ any employee earning an annual salary under $47,476 must re-assess and evaluate these new federal wage requirements affecting employee compensation. The FLSA's two-part compensation and duties test for exemption has not been changed by the new regulations. Instead, the minimum amount of salary required to qualify for the exemption has been revised. The final rule issued by the DOL increases the income threshold for employers to $913 a week, which is $47,476 annually. This new threshold is more than twice the current minimum salary. Under... READ MORE

Latest On Password Sharing From The Ninth Circuit

The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), 18 U.S.C. § 1030, was enacted by Congress in 1986 as an amendment to the Counterfeit Access Device and Abuse Act. While the CFAA is primarily a criminal law, an amendment in 1994 allows civil actions to be brought under the statute. While the CFAA has been amended many times in attempts to make it successfully evolve with the needs of computer users, rulings in two recent Ninth Circuit cases leave many other questions unanswered about the proper interpretation of the law, opening the door for more uncertain litigation, and perhaps the prosecution of individuals that... READ MORE