For many years, the law has imposed a duty on employers to take all reasonable steps to prevent discrimination, harassment and retaliation from occurring in the workplace. (Gov’t Code § 12940 (j) (1)) The failure to satisfy this duty can provide an independent basis for liability in a lawsuit from an employee under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA)...
If you’ve ever read the account of King Solomon, revered for his wisdom and sound judgment in the Hebrew Bible, you are probably familiar with the his first recorded decision as King. (1 Kings 3:16-28). Two women who had newborn baby boys stood before the new King asking for justice. Both were frantically claiming that the dead baby belonged to the other and the live baby was hers.
In Part 1 of this article I discussed some of the risks, to both employers and workers, when employees are misclassified as independent contractors. In Part 2, I will discuss how to determine an employee from an independent contractor. There are no bright-line tests for determining whether an individual is an employee or a true independent contractor.
Many employers and “employees” perceive that there are financial benefits for both, by performing work and paying/receiving compensation as an “independent contractor” as opposed to an employee. For employers, these perceived benefits include lowering or eliminating workers’ compensation insurance premiums.
Businesses that do not have an in-house human resources department or professionally trained staff often contract with third-party consultants to provide human resources services on a regular or as needed basis (“HR consultants”). The professionals who provide these services have usually received various designations such as PHR, SHRP, PHR-CA or SPHR-CA.
In an article I wrote several months ago (NLRB Decisions Hamper Employers’ Ability to Conduct Workplace Investigations), I discussed some decisions from the National Relations Labor Board (“NLRB”) that have expanded employee rights under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”).
Employers generally know when something is not right in the workplace. They can feel it. They see it in the body language and attitudes of their employees. Increased complaints, high turnover, low productivity and continual conflict are only a few of the symptoms that indicate that the workplace is somewhat, if not completely, dysfunctional.
Many years ago, a client of mine from San Jose, California purchased an apartment complex in Clovis, California. This client was not a big time investor or real estate mogul. Instead, he was an engineer who acquired the complex as part of his long-term retirement plan.
“In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Ben Franklin 1706-1790. I’d like to respectfully suggest that one thing as certain as death and taxes is CHANGE! I have no doubt during the coming year all of us will experience it!
In 1969, Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull co-authored a humorous book entitled “The Peter Principle: Why Things Always Go Wrong.” One of the principles of management theory that is discussed in the book is what has become known as the Peter Principle.