Legal Guides

Free Articles Explaining California's Employment Laws

1099 Workers vs. W-2 Employees in California: A Legal Guide

W-2 employees have significant legal rights that 1099 workers do not. The key question for California workers is how much control their boss exercises. This article takes a closer look at the differences between W-2 employees and 1099 independent contractors.

Read More

Independent Contractors vs. Employees: A Guide to California Law

Independent contractors are workers who are in business for themselves. They’re generally free to work on multiple projects at the same time, and take jobs on a freelance basis.

Read More

Break Laws in California: Meal Breaks & Rest Periods Made Easy

California employees who are considered non-exempt have a legal right to receive meal breaks and rest periods. And even most employees who are considered exempt still have a right to take meal breaks (but not rest periods).

Read More

The Waiting Time Penalty for Final Wages in California

California Labor Code section 203 imposes an important penalty on employers when they fail to pay their employees' final wages on time. Here, we explore how that penalty is calculated and when it applies.

Read More

Pregnancy Discrimination Laws in the California Workplace

California law provides important protections for employees and job applicants who are either pregnant or are new mothers. This article examines those protections.

Read More

The Administrative Exemption to California’s Labor Laws

Many administrative employees are considered exempt under California law and special rules apply to their workplace rights. This article takes a close look at the scope of the administrative employee exemption, and the limits on their rights.

Read More

Reasonable Accommodation Laws in the California Workplace

Many employees with disabilities in California have a legal right to receive reasonable accommodations to enable them to perform their work. Here, a California attorney explains the scope of those rights.

Read More

How to File a “Labor Board” Complaint in California

California law permits employees to pursue claims against their employer by filing a complaint with one of several agencies commonly called a "labor board." This article takes a look at the two main agencies in California that handle labor and employment disputes, and provides resources.

Read More

How to Request Your Employee Records & Personnel File

Employees in California have a right to request several parts of their personnel file. This article explains that right, with a sample request letter.

Read More

Job References & Hiring: What Can Employers Say in California?

This article explains the limits on what former employers in California can say about job applicants when talking to recruiters, hiring managers, or potential employers.

Read More

Workplace Breastfeeding Laws in California

California has several important legal protections for nursing mothers who also want to work. This article explains those laws.

Read More

7 Dumb Ways Employers Violate Wage & Hour Laws in California

Many employers make mistakes in paying their workers or assigning them tasks. This article takes a look at some of the most common violations.

Read More

Permanent Disability Benefits in California Workers’ Compensation Cases

In California, permanent disability benefits are available to employees injured at work if the injury or health condition causes a permanent impairment.

Read More

Job Displacement Benefits in California Workers’ Compensation Cases

Supplemental job displacement benefits ("SJDB") are non-transferable vouchers for employees who want to go to school or undergo vocational training so they can return to the workforce.

Read More

2 Gross Types of Sexual Harassment Violations in California

In California, inappropriate workplace conduct is too common. This article takes a look at the two main categories of sexual harassment.

Read More

The 5 Most Common Illegal Reasons to Be Fired in California

Although employers can usually fire employees for any lawful reason, they can’t do so when it breaks one of California's laws. This article explores five of the most common violations that employers commit when terminating their employees.

Read More

Retaliation for Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim in California

California Law provides important protections for employees who file workers' compensation claims. Here, a California attorney explains those protections.

Read More

The Outside Salesperson Exemption to California’s Labor Laws

The outside salesperson exemption applies to adults who salespeople who spend more than half their working time away from the employer’s place of business. This article examines the scope of that exemption, and the rules employers must follow when applying it.

Read More

Discrimination Laws in the California Workplace

Many employees have a right to be free from workplace discrimination. This article explains the scope of California's anti-discrimination laws.

Read More

How to File a Wage & Hour Complaint in California

California law permits employees to enforce their wage and hour rights by filing a complaint with California's Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (the DLSE). This article examines the complaint process.

Read More

How to File a Work Discrimination Complaint with California’s DFEH

California law permits employees to pursue workplace discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims by filing a complaint with the DFEH. This article explores that process.

Read More

Minimum Wage Law in California

The minimum wage is the minimum hourly rate that nearly all California employees must be paid for their work by law. In the next few years, many employees will benefit from increases in California's minimum wage laws.

Read More

How to File a Workers’ Compensation Claim in California

Workers' compensation is an important tool for employees injured on the job. This article explains the process of filing a claim for California employees.

Read More

Disability Discrimination Laws in the California Workplace

Nobody chooses to have a disability. But, for many, disabilities are a part of life. Sometimes those disabilities can negatively affect a person’s employment. This article explores the workplace rights of people with disabilities in California.

Read More

Pregnancy Leave Law in California

Under California law, many women have a right to take a period of pregnancy leave after the birth of their child. Here, a California attorney explains the legal rights of new mothers.

Read More

Sexual Harassment Law in the California Workplace

Sexual Harassment Law in the California Workplace In California, unlawful workplace sexual harassment occurs when a person directs negative, inappropriate, or unwanted conduct at a worker based on their sex, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, pregnancy, or other sex-related reason.

Read More

Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment and California Law

Hostile work environment sexual harassment is conduct that is so pervasive that a abusive work environment is created. This type of harassment is unlawful regardless of whether it is motivated by sexual desire.

Read More

Hostile Work Environments and California Law, Explained

California workers have a right to be free from harassing behaviors that create a hostile work environment. But it's important to understand which actions cross the line.

Read More

Bullying Law in the California Workplace

In California, unlawful workplace bullying occurs when a person directs negative, inappropriate, or unwanted conduct at a worker based on certain protected characteristics. Many employees have a legal right to be free from bullying in the workplace.

Read More

Workplace Harassment Law in California

In California, unlawful workplace harassment occurs when a person directs negative, inappropriate, or unwanted conduct at a worker based on certain protected characteristics. Almost all California workers are legally protected from harassment in the workplace. But it's important to understand which actions cross the line.

Read More

Overtime Wage Laws in California

Overtime wages are a type of increased payment that employees can earn when they work more than a certain number of hours in a workday or workweek. Most non-exempt employees in California have a legal right to receive overtime wages when they work long hours.

Read More

Overtime Wage Calculator for California Employees

This article explains California law on overtime wages and provides an interactive calculator to help determine an employee's overtime compensation.

Read More

Wage Paydays and Pay Periods: The Law in California Explained

California is often considered a progressive state, with a relatively high minimum wage, strong protections for employees, and a general embrace of unions and collective bargaining. In keeping with this reputation, California has fairly strict

Read More

The Computer Professional Exemption to California’s Wage Laws

Computer professionals are exempt from certain rights under California's labor laws. This can have a significant impact on their legal rights. Here, we take a closer look at the computer professional exemption.

Read More

Tip Pooling Law in California: Employee Rights Explained

Mandatory tip pooling is generally permitted under California law, with a few important exceptions. This article simplifies California's tip pooling requirements.

Read More

Wage Statement & Pay Stub Law in California

Employees have a right to receive an accurate record that details how their paycheck was calculated. This article examines California's simple wage statement requirements.

Read More

Lactation Break Law in California: The Right to Pump at Work

Nursing mothers have important legal rights in California workplaces. Here, one of our attorneys provides a simple overview of those rights.

Read More

The Law on Rounding Work Hours & Keeping Time in California

Hourly employees in California have a right to be paid for all hours they work. Rounding policies can have an important impact on this right.

Read More

The Minimum Salary Requirement for Exempt Employees in California

California's employment laws divide employees into two main categories: exempt employees and nonexempt employees. The distinction can be important because nonexempt employees have more rights than exempt employees.

Read More

The Law on Commission-Based Pay for Sales Employees in California

Employees can be paid for their work in several ways. Hourly wages and fixed salaries are the most common examples. Some employees are paid a commission basis. Some employees (mainly those in sales positions) are paid a commission basis.

Read More

The Law on Late & Unpaid Wages in California

Employers have a legal obligation to pay the wages that their employees earn. They also have an obligation to pay those wages on time. California law protects employees who experience late or unpaid wages. Here, a California employment lawyer explains the law on late and unpaid wages.

Read More

Maternity Leave Law in California

"Maternity leave" is the time a woman takes off from her job for the birth, adoption, or foster care placement of her new child. In California, many women have a legal right to be absent from work during and after their pregnancy, without having to risk losing their jobs.

Read More

Age Discrimination Laws in the California Workplace

Age discrimination occurs when an employee or job applicant over the age of 40 receives less favorable treatment because of their age. In many cases, employers in California are prohibited by law from engaging in age discrimination. This article explains the legal protections employees over the age of 40 can enjoy in California.

Read More

Tip and Gratuity Laws in California

California Labor Laws are designed to provide the highest level of protection for workers. For employees in the service industry, this means that they are legally entitled to keep all tips voluntarily left for them.

Read More

Common Litigation Deadlines in California Civil Cases

If you want to file a lawsuit or have recently become involved in a lawsuit, you are probably wondering: what should I do next? What deadlines am I up against? This article takes a look at some of the most common litigation deadlines and explains how they are calculated.

Read More

Pregnancy Disability Leave (PDL) Law in California

In California, there are generally two types of maternity leave a woman can take: pregnancy disability leave (PDL) and baby bonding leave. This article takes a closer look at PDL, its requirements, and how women can use it during and after their pregnancy.

Read More

The Professional Exemption to California’s Wage & Hour Laws

Certain professional employees are exempt from certain rights under California's labor laws. Here, we take a closer look at the professional exemption.

Read More

Paternity Leave Law in California

"Paternity leave" is the time a father takes off from his job for the birth, adoption, or foster care placement of his new child. In California, many men have a legal right to be absent from work after they become a new father, without having to risk losing their jobs.

Read More

Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment Under California Law

"Quid pro quo" is a Latin phrase that means “this for that.” Like the name implies, quid pro quo sexual harassment occurs when sexual favors are requested or demanded in exchange for a specific job benefit.

Read More

Wrongful Termination Law in California

Wrongful termination happens when an employment relationship is ended by an employer in violation of the employee’s legal rights. This article explains the important limits that California law places on an employer's ability to terminate their employees.

Read More

Constructive Discharge in California: Did I Quit or Was I Fired?

If you've recently resigned from your job, it's possible that under California law you were actually fired under the doctrine of constructive discharge.

Read More

The Executive Employee Exemption under California Law

Many executive employees are considered exempt under California law and lack certain workplace rights. This article takes a closer look at the legal tests used to determine whether an employee is an exempt executive.

Read More

Severance Packages: Why Employers Need to Consider Them

Both employers and employees can benefit from offering severance pay in California. Here, our employment lawyers explain why employers need to consider them when letting employees go.

Read More

Understanding Employment Severance Agreement in California

A severance package is a payment by an employer to an employee at the time of the employee’s termination. It is usually given in exchange for a written promise from the employee that they will not file a lawsuit against the employer.

Read More

What “At-Will” Employment Means Under California Law

Most employees in California are considered to be "at-will" employees. "At-will employment" means that the employee is free to leave their jobs at any time and employers are likewise free to fire the employee at any time for any lawful reason⁠—⁠or even no reason at all.

Read More

The Legal Definition of “Sexual Harassment” in California

In California, "sexual harassment" can be understood as inappropriate conduct that is motivated by certain unlawful reasons, like sex or gender. This article explores the details of this definition under California law

Read More

Payroll Debit Cards in California: What’s the Law on Cash Alternatives?

Payroll debit cards allow workers to receive their payments on a bank card, instead of through cash or a check. Employers sometimes use these cards to save money, but there are certain rules that California law requires to be followed.

Read More

Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Employees: Guide to California Law

California labor laws require most employers to follow certain rules⁠—⁠like paying overtime, tracking hours, or providing rest breaks. Some types of jobs, however, are exempt from these requirements.

Read More

Exceptions to California’s Wage, Hour, Break, and Overtime Laws

California labor laws require most employers to follow certain rules, like paying overtime, tracking hours, or providing rest breaks. The law, however, provides for several important exceptions to these requirements.

Read More

Two Weeks’ Notice Letters: Are They Required by California Law?

Generally, California employees are not required by law to give any advance notice to their employer before they quit their job, but there are exceptions. This article explains the law for employees planning to quit.

Read More

Overtime Exemptions Under California Law

Many, but not all, employees in California have a right to be paid overtime wages. This article takes a look at exceptions to overtime laws.

Read More