Liebert Cassidy Whitmore

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This article was originally published in February 2014.  The information has been reviewed and is up-to-date as of August 2021.  Under the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), the employer has the duty to identify and implement a reasonable accommodation to allow a disabled employee to perform the essential functions of the job.  Common pitfalls for employers in determining appropriate accommodations are: Over-reliance on the written job description Job descriptions are critical in the disability interactive process for identifying the essential functions of the job.  This is one reason why we repeatedly…
This article was originally published in June 2014.  The information has been reviewed and is up-to-date as of August 2021.   It is a common phrase that most in the public sector have heard of – a “PERS audit.”  However, despite having heard of CalPERS (“PERS”) audits occurring, many have not experienced an audit firsthand and are unfamiliar with what PERS audits entail. CalPERS’ Office of Audit Services performs comprehensive reviews of public agency employers.  Part of that review function includes regularly conducting audits of public agencies.  These audits cover a wide range of issues such as reporting of special…
This article was originally published in February 2015.  The information has been reviewed and is up-to-date as of August 2021.  The term “on call pay” is subject to various interpretations.  There is on-call pay where an employer pays an employee a flat rate or small hourly amount to be available to the employer, such as $100 per week or $2 per hour.  But wage and hour law may require all of the on-call time to be paid, at least at minimum wage, if the time is considered “controlled.”  As with many wage and hour areas, the issue as to whether…
This article was reviewed in August 2021 and is up-to-date.   The stock market has reached all-time highs and the economy in general continues to be strong.  In this scenario, many public sector employers are hiring.  Although this is certainly welcome news, the hiring process does, however, carry legal risks. The following are six areas of the hiring process in the public sector that deserve particular attention from a legal perspective.  This is not an exhaustive list of such areas, or a complete list of considerations, but it provides a general framework for what to trouble-shoot before hiring begins in earnest. Utilize…
This article was reviewed in July 2021 and is up-to-date.   As the summer season winds down, so do public agency departments that hire seasonal workers to staff summer camps, pools, extended park and recreation hours, and a myriad of season-specific facilities and activities. But, just how do seasonal workers impact the agency’s health and retirement benefit obligations? The Affordable Care Act (ACA), Seasonal Worker Exception The number of seasonal workers you hire may impact whether your agency is subject to certain ACA obligations. Under ACA, employers that have at least fifty (50) full-time employees, including “full-time equivalent” employees, on…
This article was reviewed in July 2021 and is up-to-date.   Often times, an employee may know that discipline or a poor performance evaluation is imminent. Occasionally, such an employee will engage in a preemptive strike—“You can’t discipline me or give me a poor performance evaluation now since I have submitted a complaint.” While this may not necessarily be the norm, it is also not unheard of, causing employers to go from being confident in their decision to being uncertain and worried about the possibility of costly litigation. Many believe retaliation claims are the easiest for employees to allege and…