Omid Nosrati

Los Angeles California Employment Law Blog

What Are Your Rights During A Probationary Period At A New Job?

When starting a new job, many workers are told they are in a probationary or introductory period. These periods vary in length but often last between 30 or 90 days. As you train into your job, the period can provide an opportunity for both you and your employer to see whether the job is a good long-term fit.

While your employer may withhold some benefits, such as vacation time, until you complete the probationary period, you still have many important rights and protections under law. Here are three important ones.

Will it become easier for employees to prove FMLA retaliation?

Employers already face significant difficulties when FMLA leave-related disputes arise. A recent court ruling only increases the challenges companies deal with when disciplining or terminating an employee who is on or just completed FMLA leave.

Cassandra Woods was an employee of START Treatment & Recovery Centers. Issues related and not related to work affected her performance. As the problems increased, her employer felt the need to document her inability to achieve what they deemed “required outcomes” involving her job.

HR group argues federal exempt overtime threshold should rise

A federal judge recently scuttled plans to raise the salary level that helps determine whether employees are entitled to overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Workers who are subject to the federal FLSA are generally entitled to overtime pay unless they meet a specific exemption from the law.

The salary level is part of a three-part test that determines whether a worker qualifies for an exemption, such as the administrative, executive, learned professional, outside sales, computer employee or creative professional exemption. Using the administrative exemption as an example, the three factors include:

  • The worker is paid on a salary or fee basis at a rate of $455 per week or greater (the salary level).
  • The worker's primary job duty is the performance of non-manual work that directly relates to the management of general business operations or the employer's customers.
  • The worker's primary job duty involves the exercise of independent judgment and discretion in matters of significance.

Is sexual orientation discrimination equal to sex discrimination?

The Supreme Court’s ruling legalizing same-sex marriage represented a milestone for the LGBT community. Their long, hard-fought battle to be placed on legal footing with opposite-sex marriage culminated in a key victory.

However, another fight continues. The hallmark achievement two years ago now serves as a prelude to ending discrimination in another setting.

Three tips for pregnant employees

Getting a job in today’s marketplace may be easier compared to past years. But if you are a pregnant woman, the road to a job may still be as difficult as when the last depression killed jobs. This is because not every employer understands (or follows) the rules governing pregnant workers and may discriminate against them. Because of this, it is important for pregnant workers to protect themselves against unscrupulous employers.

This post will provide some helpful tips.

Women file class action against Google claiming unequal pay

Three female plaintiffs have filed suit against Google and hope to have the lawsuit certified as a class action. They claim that the internet giant routinely pays women substantially less than men for similar work. This violates the California Equal Pay Act and other anti-discrimination laws. Moreover, they claim the company thwarts advancement by women.

The women claim that the discrimination is systematic. According to their complaint, Google sets different compensation levels for male and female employees, keeping women partitioned into levels with lower ceilings. And, throughout the company, fewer women are promoted and they move through the ranks more slowly than men.

Bill expanding California parental leave heads to governor

Not all expectant parents in California are guaranteed time off once their children are born. While state law guarantees 12 weeks of parental leave for many new mothers and fathers, the existing law only covers people working in companies with at least 50 employees.

This could change under SB 63, the New Parent Leave Act, which recently passed the California Senate. If Gov. Jerry Brown signs the bill into law, protections that currently exist for workers at larger companies would extend to workers at companies that employ at least 20 people.

Did a cemetery worker reporting bad behavior dig his own grave?

In 2015, Reymond Blazys began working at Roselawn Memorial Park and Glenview Memorial Gardens, two cemeteries based in southern Wisconsin. After two years of watching his co-workers perform their supposedly sacred duties while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, he decided to report their bad behavior.

Not long after, Blazys was fired.

Female employees win $10 million settlement with Ford

In a bit of news that may have slipped under your radar in the last couple of weeks, Ford settled a lawsuit with a group of female employees to the tune of $10.1 million. The allegations made by the women stem from a hostile work environment at a Chicago assembly plant that they claim fostered an atmosphere of sexual harassment and sexual favors.

According to the lawsuit, some male employees requested sexual favors from women at the plant, and that they would expose their genitals at work, either in person or with a cellphone picture. Ford responded by firing eight managers at the plant in 2015, including the lead manager.

Labor and workplace discrimination laws on a collision course?

One day after former Google employee James Damore filed a National Labor Relations Board complaint, a court ruling may have already bolstered the merits of his complaint.

Damore is the former engineer whose candid email recently garnered banner headlines that saw his name and story trend on social media. After sending the missive where he claimed that gender inequality in software engineering is based on biological differences, he was fired for the memo.

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