Has Your Company Been Reimbursing its Employees for Personal Cell Phone Use on the Job?

by Jennifer A. Grady, Esq.

cell phone 2Since January 1, 2016, California employers must reimburse employees for use of their personal cell phones for mandatory business purposes.  (Cochran v. Schwan’s Home Service, Inc). This ruling affects millions of employers who must update their company policies in order to stay compliant with the new law.  While this law has been on the books for over two years now, it appears as though many companies have not addressed this law or made it part of their employee reimbursement practices.  Is your company reimbursing its employees for their cell phone call and data usage?  Read below for policy suggestions.

What does this mean for employers?

According to Cochran, California employers must indemnify employees for all “necessary expenditures or losses incurred by the employee in direct consequence of the discharge of his or her duties, or of his or her obedience to the directions of the employer.” Unfortunately, even four years after this case was decided, the exact measure of reimbursement is still somewhat unclear.  While the court in Cochran determined that employers must consistently reimburse employees a “reasonable percentage,” it did not define what is reasonable. Furthermore, the employer must reimburse the employee even if the employee does not incur any additional expense on his or her cell phone/data plan as the result of using the device for work-related purposes (i.e. if the client has unlimited talk, text, and data plans).

This law is now reflected in California Labor Code section 2082: Continue reading

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Valentine’s Day Special- $150 Off Employment Law Packages

New Year’s has come and gone, and we are now six weeks into 2016!  Haven’t had time to update your Employee Handbook, policies and procedures, or personnel files? The Grady Firm is here to help!

In order to show love to our deserving customers, we are offering a discount of $150.00 off our employment law advising packages through February 29, 2016.  To find out more about our services, book a time to speak with our employment law attorneys, or call 323-450-9010 by the end of the month, and mention this promotion.

Has Your Company Been Keeping Track of Accrued Paid Sick Leave Time Since January 1?

As you may be aware, on July 1, 2015, a new law affecting millions of Californians went into effect requiring that employers – both public and private – provide paid sick leave to all their employees. Under the new law, employers will have to modify or update existing paid sick leave or time off policies, as well as payroll, record-keeping, wage statement, and employee notice procedures.

In addition, employers are required to provide most employees with an individualized Notice to Employee  (required under Labor Code section 2810.5) that includes paid sick leave information.

Has your company been providing its employees with notice of the amount of paid sick leave its employees are entitled to on each wage statement in 2016?

If you have questions about an employer’s responsibility to provide sick leave and notice of hours earned to its employees, The Grady Firm attorneys can review your company’s policies to ensure they are in compliance. Schedule a time to speak with our employment law department today.