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Employment Lawyer Network:

Joseph L. Beachboard (Editor)

California Employment Law

(213) 239-9800

Click for Full Bio

Joseph L. Beachboard is a nationally recognized expert on employment law issues who speaks regularly at SHRM and other HR events. He also is a regular contributor to several national and California publications. In 2000, Mr. Beachboard sold The Labor Letters, Inc., a publisher of monthly employment law journals that he founded to advise human resource professionals. He is a founding member and executive director of the Management Employment Law Roundtable, a national, invitation only, organization of management labor and employment lawyers.

Offer to ‘help’ doesn’t equal quid pro quo harassment

A supervisor’s offer to “help” someone reach their career goals in exchange for romantic involvement isn’t enough to support allegations of quid pro quo harassment. To make the employer liable, the supervisor must have had the power to actually “help” and then deny that assistance.

Prepare to reasonably accommodate medical testing

Don’t assume that someone who appears healthy and has been successfully performing his job isn’t disabled while undergoing medical tests.

Warn bosses: They may be held personally liable for hostile environment harassment

Warn supervisors: If they insult and abuse employees based on protected characteristics, they’re not just putting the company at risk. That kind of misbehavior may mean punitive damages against them personally.

Feel free to set tougher rules against harassment than the law requires

Employers can create rules to prohibit and prevent sexual harassment that go beyond the standards laid out in Title VII, state or local laws.

Appeals court reverses course: Sometimes a ‘service charge’ really is a gratuity

A California state appeals court has reinstated a lawsuit asking whether banquet “service charges” are tips payable to servers under Labor Code Section 351.

Warn supervisors: No vulgar name-calling

Here’s a reminder for HR professionals in charge of training programs for managers and supervisors: Warn bosses to refrain from name-calling that could be perceived as sexist or hostile.

Fatality leads to settlement for farm labor contractor

Healthy Harvesting Inc., located in California’s Imperial Valley, has agreed to pay $79,153 in civil penalties under the Migrant Seasonal Workers Protection Act.

Association retirement plans coming to small businesses

Small businesses will soon be able to offer retirement savings plans to their workers through association retirement plans under a final Department of Labor rule that will take effect Sept. 30.

It was just a meeting, not false imprisonment

An employee whose supervisor ordered her to take a seat in a conference room has lost her request for a trial on charges of false imprisonment.

Can we make pay raises contingent on doing charitable volunteer work?

Q. Our new CEO believes in volunteering and wants to institute a new requirement that all employees volunteer at least five hours per month to be eligible for pay increases at evaluation time. She wants to provide a list of appropriate places to volunteer. Can she do this?