Hill, Farrer & Burrill LLP

Employment Updates

Federal Court Temporarily Blocks AB 51, California Law Barring Mandatory Employment Arbitration

On December 30, 2019, Judge Kimberly Mueller of the United States District Court in the Eastern District granted a temporary restraining order, which enjoins California from enforcing AB 51.  AB 51 is a California anti-arbitration law signed by Governor Newsom on October 10, 2019 that was scheduled to go into effect on January 1, 2020.  The law prohibits employers from requiring that job applicants or workers sign arbitration agreements as a condition of their employment or continued employment.  AB 51 specifically states that it is not “intended to invalidate a written arbitration agreement that is otherwise enforceable under the Federal Arbitration Act.” More>>

New California Employment Bills Approved by the Governor

October 13, 2019 was the deadline for Governor Newsom to decide whether to approve or veto several employment bills that were passed by the California Legislature in 2019.  The laws signed by Governor Newsom are summarized below and will become effective January 1, 2020 unless otherwise noted.

AB 5 (Independent Contractor v. Employee)

AB 5 codifies Dynamex, a 2018 California Supreme Court decision, and makes workers employees unless the hiring entity demonstrates each of the following factors under the so-called “ABC” test: (A) the person is free from the control and direction of the hiring entity in connection with the performance of the work; (B) the person performs work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business; and (C) the person is customarily engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, or business. More>>