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Employment Law

Ensure employee has all parts of arbitration agreement

Don’t exclude any parts of an arbitration agreement when you have a worker sign it. California courts won’t hesitate to toss out missing portions.

Be prepared to prove employee really did sign arbitration agreement

If you are a California employer that uses arbitration to settle workplace disputes, you need a good system to prove that each employee signed off on the agreement.

Beware sexist slights, which can quickly add up to a hostile work environment

Courts are becoming more sensitive to claims that what some may have long considered “harmless” behavior has a real effect on women’s careers and can create a sexually hostile work environment.

Workplace fight? OK to punish based on severity of injuries

If two workers fight, employers are free to issue harsher punishment to the worker who inflicts the most severe injuries. Just make sure you document exactly why you believe the more aggressive worker deserves greater punishment.

Include travel time pay when figuring OT

Do you have workers you pay a set amount for travel time from one location to another during the day? If so, that payment probably must be included in “hours worked” for calculating overtime payments for the week.

‘Bro culture’ in West L.A. brings suspension, lawsuit

Riot Games, developer of the “League of Legends” e-sport game, has suspended Chief Operating Officer Scott Gelb following an investigation of his alleged workplace antics.

No-fighting rule? Punish combatants equally

You probably have a rule against any form of violence in the workplace. Make sure you uniformly discipline everyone involved in any altercation.

Without FMLA notice, no FMLA leave required

Employees have to let their employers know when they need FMLA leave. Although they don’t have to specifically mention the FMLA, they do have to pass on enough information so the employer can reasonably understand that’s what the employee is requesting.

Run-of-the-mill gripes don’t justify lawsuits

Courts require employees to have fairly thick skins. Ordinary annoyances aren’t reason enough to quit.

No absolute requirement to notify laid-off workers that their jobs are open again

Sometimes, workers who are laid off are told they’re eligible for rehire. But absent a specific promise to call if there’s a job opening, employees can’t wait months or years to complain about discrimination when they discover the job was open and someone else filled it.