On January 1, 2018, a series of new employment laws took effect in California, covering a broad range of employment topics. This article provides a short explanation of some of these new laws and how they might affect you as an employer or an employee.
- The Immigrant Worker Protection Act: Under this law, employers are prohibited (barring certain exceptions) from allowing immigration agents to enter non-public areas of workspaces without proper judicial warrants. Additionally, immigration agents cannot access employee records without a valid subpoena or court order. Employers must also provide employees with notice of an immigration agency’s inspection of I-9 forms or other records within 72 hours.
- Changes to harassment training: All employers with 50 or more employees are required to include in their training practical examples to raise awareness of and to reduce harassment based on gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation.
- “Ban the box”: Employers with five or more employees are not able to ask about an applicant’s conviction history until a conditional offer of employment is made. Employers must also conduct individualized assessments demonstrating that an applicant’s conviction history is directly and adversely related to the specific duties of the job. Employers must also provide the employee with a five-business day period to dispute the accuracy of reports indicating a criminal past. Lastly, employers must notify employees of final decisions regarding consideration of criminal backgrounds.
- Salary history: All employers are forbidden from inquiring about salary history and must also provide pay scales for work positions, when asked reasonably.
- Changes to maternity policy: Baby-bonding leave has been expanded to employers with at least 20 employees within a 75-mile radius of the employer.
If you believe your employment rights have been violated in California, don’t hesitate to call CounselOne at (310) 789-2145.