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Featured Insights

Payne & Fears provides high quality legal and business insights, and we are committed to delivering practical and timely updates for a diverse range of issues, businesses and industries.

Labor and Employment Law
Jun 14 | Labor and Employment Law
The key California Employment Law Case Summaries from May 2022 include using unpaid meal- and rest-break premiums as basis for waiting-time penalties and inaccurate wage statement claims, FAA requirements for resisting arbitration, and a trial court's discretion to apply the doctrine of exclusive concurrent jurisdiction to stay a later-filed PAGA action involving claims that overlap with an earlier-filed PAGA action.
Insurance Coverage
May 24 | Insurance Coverage
In a decision that further muddies the already murky waters of “occurrence” jurisprudence, the California Court of Appeal has ruled that a general liability policy does not cover a homeowner who mistakenly grades the wrong piece of land because the act of grading land is not “accidental.”
Business Litigation
Apr 29 | Business Litigation
The California Court of Appeal recently provided much needed clarification regarding the application of Proposition 65, which prohibits businesses from knowingly and intentionally exposing individuals to certain chemicals without first providing a written warning. In Lee v. Amazon.com, Inc., 76 Cal. App. 5th 200 (March 2022), the court addressed two key questions: (1) whether constructive knowledge of hazardous chemicals and potential exposure is sufficient under the statute, or if actual knowledge is required; and (2) what level of specificity is required in a Proposition 65 Notice of Violation. Lee’s ruling is important for every company that sells consumer products because Proposition 65 obligations apply “to any retailer, manufacturer, producer, packager, importer, supplier, or distributor of the product.” Lee, 76 Cal. App 5th at 231. A company found to have violated Proposition 65 can be fined up to $2,500 per violation per day, which can quickly add up, especially if the violator sells multiple offending products on a regular/daily basis.
E.g., 07/02/2022
E.g., 07/02/2022
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Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
2021 | Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
A businessman standing in the window of a high-rise building reading urgent business documents.
On Sept. 9, 2021, President Joe Biden announced his COVID-19 Action Plan. The Action Plan called on the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) to develop a rule requiring all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workforce is fully vaccinated or require any workers who remain unvaccinated to produce a negative test result on at least a weekly basis before coming to work. In response, on Nov. 4, 2021, OSHA released the rule in the form of an Emergency Temporary Standards (“OSHA ETS”).
Legal Alert, Insurance Coverage
2021 | Legal Alert, Insurance Coverage
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On Oct. 28, 2021, the Nevada Supreme Court in Zurich American Insurance Company v.. Ironshore Specialty Insurance Company, 137 Nev. Adv. Op. 66, held that an insured can rely on extrinsic facts to show that an insurer has a duty to defend the insured, as long as the facts were available to the insurer at the time the insured tendered the claim. The court also held that an insured has the burden of proving that an exception to an exclusion in an insurance policy applies to create a duty to defend.
Legal Alert, Business Litigation
2021 | Legal Alert, Business Litigation
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In a recent decision in Gray v. Dignity Health, the California Court of Appeal analyzed the impact of the federal Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (“EMTALA”) statute, and similar provisions of California law, on hospitals’ disclosure of the fees for emergency medical care prior to providing emergency services. The court rejected an argument that hospitals have a duty to post emergency room rates in the emergency room and held that posting of such rates could violate EMTALA because it would discourage patients from seeking emergency medical care. The Court thereby affirmed that the requirements of EMTALA preclude an affirmative duty to disclose rates in the emergency room.
Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
2021 | Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
A businessman standing in the window of a high-rise building reading urgent business documents.
On October 20, 2021, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) announced a new effort to identify and correct violations of the Fair Chance Act, which seeks to reduce barriers to employment for individuals with criminal histories, often called the “ban the box” law.
Case Summary, Labor and Employment Law
2021 | Case Summary, Labor and Employment Law
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September's case summaries include rulings on mandatory employment arbitration agreements, the fairness and efficiency of PAGA claim trials, plaintiffs in multiple PAGA claims, and notice in administrative claims.
Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
2021 | Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
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On Oct. 7, 2021, Governor Newsom signed into law SB 331, or the “Silenced No More Act,” which updates existing laws to place new restrictions on nondisclosure and non-disparagement provisions in agreements with employees and former employees.
Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
2021 | Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
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On Sept. 22, 2021, Governor Newsom signed AB 701, aimed at regulating quotas in warehouse distribution centers, into law. Here is what employers need to know.
Case Summary, Labor and Employment Law
2021 | Case Summary, Labor and Employment Law
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August's case summaries include issues with proper authentication of records, section 998 offers, and predispute arbitration agreements.
Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
2021 | Legal Alert, Labor and Employment Law
A businessman standing in the window of a high-rise building reading urgent business documents.
This morning, in its decision in Chamber of Commerce v. Bonta, No. 20-15291, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a January 2020 preliminary injunction against enforcement of AB 51, a 2019 California law effectively banning mandatory employee arbitration agreements. With the preliminary injunction vacated, the State of California is no longer barred from enforcing this law.

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