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legal news & tips for employees published by Law Office of Eugene Lee

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What Break Periods Am I Entitled To?

What Break Periods Am I Entitled To?

Under California law (which is much more generous to employees than federal law), if you are a non-exempt worker, you are entitled to meal and rest breaks: a 30-minute meal break if you work more than 5 hours in a workday, and 10 minutes breaks for every 4 hours you ...

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Can My Employer Break My Employment Contract? Can I?

Can My Employer Break My Employment Contract? Can I?

Whenever it comes to contracts, the answer is always the same: it depends on what the contract says. A contract is a contract is a contract. Neither you nor your employer can breach a contract without facing the consequences. That is, unless the contract says it's ok. This is why ...

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Top 5 Tips: So You Want to Sue Your Boss?

Top 5 Tips: So You Want to Sue Your Boss?

So you want to sue your employer for racial discrimination, sexual harassment, whistleblower retaliation, failure to pay you your last paycheck, what have you. Now what? Here are five tips all clients should keep in mind before they pick up the phone to call a lawyer. Tip 1: Write it, don’t ...

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Can My Boss Fire Me at Any Time for Any Reason? What is “at will”?

Can My Boss Fire Me at Any Time for Any Reason? What is “at will”?

"At-Will". California is an "at-will" employment state. What does this mean? In most cases, it means that your boss can fire you at any time for almost any reason or no reason at all. She can fire you because she doesn't like you thinks you're too tall or short thinks you talk too ...

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Background Checks — What Are My Rights?

Background Checks -- What Are My Rights?

If you're applying for a job, or want to keep one, you're going to have to accept that background checks are becoming a part of work life. An estimated 50% of resumes submitted by job applicants contain false or inaccurate information. Bad employees who slip through the hiring process can ...

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US Supreme Court Says Class Actions Can Be Banned

Have you ever sat down and read the “fine print”? That long, boring document with tiny print that falls out of the box of whatever you just bought? Me neither. But maybe we all should from now on.

In AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion et ux., (more…)

Los Angeles Courthouses Face Closure: Expect Big Delays

According to an article in the Pasadena Star News, “L.A. County Superior Court faces budget ax; nine courthouses could close”, up to 9 of Los Angeles County’s 50 courthouses may be closed due to (more…)

Should Workers Be Paid for Answering Emails After Hours?

In today’s high-tech world, a constant connection to the web and phone comes at a price for workers: all too often, the office comes home with you. A Pew Internet & American Life Project 2008 study entitled “Networked Workers: Most Workers Use the Internet or Email at their Jobs, but They Say These Technologies are a Mixed Blessing for Them”, (more…)

Google Offers Caselaw…for FREE

Today Google announced the launch of a free federal and state caselaw database that is lightning fast and extremely powerful. It can be found at the “legal opinions and journals” section of Google Scholar. (more…)

Employers Are Now Screening Employee Facebook and MySpace Pages

Do you have a personal account with Facebook, MySpace, Twitter or any of the other social media websites that have become so popular lately? Chances are you (more…)

Economic Recovery Around the Bend?

The signs of recovery (or at least a bottoming out) are there. The US economy shrank just 1% between April and July of 2009, after shrinking at a torrid 6.4% pace in the first quarter. (more…)

2009 Federal Minimum Wage Increases to $7.25

On July 24, 2009, the federal minimum wage increased from $6.55 an hour to $7.25 an hour. According to NPR’s “Your Gains, Losses in Minimum Wage Hike”, the roughly 5 million wage earners who make less than $7.25 an hour will see an immediate benefit, as likely will another approximately 10.5 million wage earners above them as employers raise their pay scales across the board.

Given the current recession/depression we are in, there is more than the usual level of controversy attending the increase. Conservative economists contend the wage increase will only deepen unemployment as employers respond by cutting (more…)

Dept. of Labor Fails to Protect Workers: “We have a crisis in wage theft”

Is your boss ripping you off by refusing to pay you overtime? Forcing you to work off the clock? Not letting you take meal or rest breaks? If so, you might want to think twice about calling up the U.S. Department of Labor to lodge a complaint. According to a recent GAO report, it will likely be months before you get a (more…)

“Change” is Coming to the Federal Courts – Obama-style

federal circuit courts With a Democrat about to enter the White House for the first time in 8 years and with a Democratic-majority firmly in control of Congress, the conservative Federal judiciary is about to come face-to-face with the C-word – and in a big way. (more…)

‘Desk Rage’ on the Rise

If you thought ‘road rage’ was a problem, make way for ‘desk rage’. According to this Reuters report, "Desk rage spoils workplace for many Americans" , anger in the workplace is on the rise. And it isn’t just about ‘going postal’. The article contains some startling statistics – of the workers who responded to research surveys: (more…)

Respected Judge Posts Sex Images Online

Alex Kozinski As you may know, California falls within the jurisdiction of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and the chief judge of that court is one Alex Kozinski. A brilliant jurist, he was first appointed to the Court by Reagan at the tender age of 35, making him the youngest federal appeals (more…)