Articles

NEW CALIFORNIA PAY TRANSPARENCY LAW 2023

by ELLEN COHEN & MIREYA LLAURADO

California employers should be aware that starting January 1, 2023, employers with 15 or more employees must include a pay scale in job postings. The Labor Commissioner recently posted FAQs about the new law, which include the following guidance:

• In determining whether a business has 15 or more employees, all employees are included, regardless of the number of hours worked or location. This means that employees outside the state of California count toward the 15-employee threshold. The Labor Commissioner appears to take the position that employees obtained from staffing agencies should be included along with direct hires in an employer’s employee count.

• The pay scale is defined as “the salary or hourly wage range that the employer reasonably expects to pay for the position.” If the employer intends to pay a set hourly rate or set piece rate, the employer may list that set rate, rather than a pay range. If an employee will be paid on a commission basis, the commission rate must be included in the posting.

• The pay scale is not required to include bonuses, tips, or other benefits (although such information may make recruiting efforts more competitive).

• The Labor Commissioner takes the position that the pay scale must be posted for any position that “may ever be filled in California, either in person or remotely.”

• The Labor Commissioner takes the position that the pay scale must be included within the job posting; the employer cannot provide a QR code or link that will take an applicant to the salary information.

Employers should be aware of and abide by the posting requirements (and other Equal Pay Act provisions) in order to avoid claims filed by employees with the Labor Commissioner’s office or in court.

The full list of the Labor Commissioner’s FAQs can be found here. The text of SB 1162 can be found here.

The Employment Attorneys at Call & Jensen are available to assist you with questions about the new pay scale law or any other employment questions you may have.

The foregoing is intended as general information only. For legal advice specific to your situation, please consult employment counsel.

JURY AWARDS $9 MILLION TO CALL & JENSEN CLIENTS IN LOS ANGELES BREACH OF CONTRACT CASE

September 19, 2022

This hotly disputed breach of contract case, filed in 2019, arose between Call & Jensen clients Brightex International, Inc., and Joyful Will International Limited, subsidiaries of an overseas textile company and Defendant Romex Textiles, Inc., a Los Angeles-based broker of textiles.

Call & Jensen attorneys David Sugden and Aaron Renfro argued that Defendant Romex breached contracts by failing to pay for textiles and fabrics that it ordered and received from Plaintiffs between 2014 and 2019. Defendant argued that some of the fabric was late and defective. Defendant cross-claimed against Joyful Will and Brightex, stating that an employee of Plaintiffs made unlawful and defamatory statements and that Plaintiffs breached their contracts by delivering defective goods.

The 12-person jury returned its verdict in favor of Plaintiffs and against Defendant Romex on all counts, including breach of contract, goods sold and delivered, open book account, and account stated. The jury found Defendant liable for damages totaling nine million dollars ($9,000,000.00). The jury also found in favor of Joyful Will and Brightex on all cross claims.

Plaintiffs appeared by their counsel, David R. Sugden, Aaron L. Renfro, and L. Lisa Sandoval of Call & Jensen. (Joyful Will International Limited and Brightex International Inc. v. Romex Textiles, Inc., Case No. 19STCV40836). Defendant appeared by their counsel, Nico N. Tabibi and Ryan Golbari of the Law Offices of Nico Tabibi.

David R. Sugden – dsugden@calljensen.com

Aaron L. Renfro – arenfro@calljensen.com

L. Lisa Sandoval – lsandoval@calljensen.com

SUPREME COURT REJECTS PETITION TO UNDO CALL & JENSEN COPYRIGHT VICTORY AT NINTH CIRCUIT

The decision preserves Call & Jensen’s critical victory at the Ninth Circuit curtailing the ability of copyright plaintiffs to recover windfalls from defendants in the same supply chain. The Ninth Circuit previously vacated a lower court’s judgment awarding multiple statutory damages awards to a plaintiff copyright owner for the infringement of its copyrighted floral pattern. The lower court awarded a separate award to the plaintiff for each defendant in the supply chain that sold the infringing fabric—all of which came from a single supplier defendant. Aaron Renfro and Sam Brooks of Call & Jensen represented the defendants and argued that under Section 504(c)(3) of the Copyright Act, the plaintiff was only entitled to a single award of statutory damages because each of the defendants in the supply chain was jointly and severally liable with the supplier. The Ninth Circuit agreed and vacated the lower court judgment, after which the plaintiff petitioned the Supreme Court to reverse the Ninth Circuit ruling. The Supreme Court rejected the petition, thereby exhausting the plaintiff’s appellate options.