For our clients in California, please be aware of the following new laws, Grand Theft (AB 1003) and Employees at Warehouse Distribution Centers and Production Quotas (AB 701), and get in touch with us if you have any questions or concerns.
Grand Theft (AB 1003):
“In the new year, intentional theft of wages, including tips, in an amount greater than $950.00 from a single employee or $2,350 from two or more employees during any consecutive 12-month period is punishable as grand theft. Independent contractors are included in the definition of “employees” who are protected by the law, and hiring entities that hire independent contractors are “employers” who can be charged with theft of wages.”
Employees at Warehouse Distribution Centers and Production Quotas (AB 701):
“Employers who directly or indirectly employ or exercise control over the wages, hours or working conditions of 100 or more employees at a single “warehouse distribution center” or 1,000 or more employees at one or more warehouse distribution centers in California must start providing, upon hire or by Jan. 31, 2022, nonexempt employees with a written description of each quota to which the employee is subject, including the quantified number of tasks to be performed or materials to be produced or handled within the applicable defined time period, and of any potential adverse employment actions the employee could experience as a result of failing to meet the quota. The law further provides that nonexempt employees at warehouse distribution centers cannot be required to meet a quota that interferes with meal or rest breaks or time taken to reach, use and return from bathrooms, or violates occupational health and safety laws. Employers of such employees are also prohibited from taking an adverse employment action against an employee for failing to meet a quota that has not been disclosed or that does not allow a worker to comply with meal or rest periods or occupational health and safety laws. Further, any action taken by an employee to comply with occupational health and safety laws or standards must be considered time on task and productive time for the purposes of any quotas or monitoring system. Among other enforcement tools provided by the new law is that if a current or former employee believes that meeting a quota caused a violation of their right to a meal or a rest period or required them to violate any occupational health and safety law or standard, they have the right to request, and the employer is required to provide, a written description of each quota to which the employee is subject and a copy of the most recent 90 days of the employee’s own personal work speed data. The current or former employee could seek an injunction to obtain compliance and may recover costs and reasonable attorneys fees. There is also a rebuttable presumption of unlawful retaliation if an employer discriminates, retaliates or takes any other adverse action against any employee within 90 days of the employee initiating their first request in a calendar year for information about a quota or personal work speed data or making a complaint related to a quota violating this law.”