Dan Ko Obuhanych

Dan Ko Obuhanych

Fenwick & West LLP

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Are LinkedIn Contacts The Employer's Trade Secrets?

A federal district court in California held in Cellular Accessories For Less, Inc. v. Trinitas LLC that whether LinkedIn contact information can be an employer's trade secret is a factual dispute that must be decided by a...more

10/24/2014 - Customer Lists Employment Contract Former Employee LinkedIn Trade Secrets

Fenwick Employment Brief - October 2014

New Laws Affecting California Employers - The 2014 legislative session is in the books, and it produced several new laws affecting employers in California, including: Private arbitration companies must provide...more

10/23/2014 - American Arbitration Association Arbitration Arbitrators Bank Holding Company Customer Lists Discrimination Employer Liability Issues Harassment JAMS join Joint Employers LinkedIn New Legislation Reporting Requirements Retaliation Sexual Harassment Subsidiaries Trade Secrets Training Unpaid Interns Whistleblowers Workplace Bullying

IRCA Does Not Preempt FEHA, But Limits Available Remedies

In Salas v. Sierra Chemical Co., the California Supreme Court addressed the issue of whether the federal Immigration Reform and Control Act (“IRCA”) preempts the application of the antidiscrimination provisions of...more

7/28/2014 - Discrimination FEHA Immigrants Immigration IRCA

Change To Handbook Arbitration Policy—Adding Class Action Waiver—Was Valid And Enforceable

On the same day that the California Supreme Court issued Iskanian, another important ruling with respect to class action arbitration waivers was issued by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. In Davis v. Nordstrom, the court...more

7/25/2014 - Arbitration Arbitration Agreements Class Action Class Action Arbitration Waivers Employee Handbooks Nordstrom Inc.

California Employees Can Waive Class Claims In An Arbitration Agreement, But Not PAGA Claims

Resolving an issue that has created uncertainty for California employers, the California Supreme Court recently held in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC that class action waivers in employment arbitration...more

7/24/2014 - Arbitration Arbitration Agreements Class Action Class Action Arbitration Waivers CLS Transportation Employer Liability Issues Federal Arbitration Act Iskanian PAGA Trucking Industry

Fenwick Employment Brief - July 2014

California Employees Can Waive Class Claims In An Arbitration Agreement, But Not PAGA Claims - Resolving an issue that has created uncertainty for California employers, the California Supreme Court recently held in...more

7/23/2014 - Arbitration Canning v NLRB Class Action Arbitration Waivers CLS Transportation Delivery Drivers Employee Handbooks Employer Liability Issues Employment Contract FEHA Fraud Independent Contractors IRCA Iskanian Newspapers NLRB PAGA Sales Commissions SCOTUS Trucking Industry Waivers

FEHA Limitations Period Cannot be Shortened by Agreement

In Ellis v. U.S. Security Associates, a California Court of Appeal held that an employer’s attempt to shorten the one year statute of limitations to file a harassment claim under FEHA was against public policy and...more

4/29/2014 - Claims Limitations Period FEHA Harassment

NLRB Continues to Scrutinize Employee Handbook Provisions

In Hills and Dales General Hospital, the NLRB recently determined that an employer’s standards of behavior policy that prohibited “negative comments” and “negativity or gossip,” and directed employees to represent the...more

4/28/2014 - Employee Handbooks Employer Liability Issues Employment Policies Hills and Dales NLRB

SEC Cautions Employers Not To Discourage Whistleblower Claims

In a recent speech, the SEC recently warned businesses not to attempt to disincentivize company whistleblowers from bringing alleged wrongdoing to the attention of the SEC, and that the SEC is “very concerned” about any...more

4/25/2014 - Employer Mandates SEC Whistleblowers

Employee Terminated for Stealing Caused by Disability Entitled to Discrimination Trial

Is an employer allowed to enforce a uniformly-applied workplace conduct policy against an employee whose misconduct was caused by her disability? A federal district court in California said “maybe, maybe not,” and determined...more

4/24/2014 - Corporate Counsel Disability Discrimination EEOC Employment Policies Hiring & Firing Termination Walgreens

Supreme Court Confirms FICA Taxes Must be Withheld from Severance Payments

Finding severance payments to be a form of “remuneration for employment,” the United States Supreme Court in United States v. Quality Stores, Inc. held that such payments are taxable wages – and thus subject to withholding –...more

4/23/2014 - FICA Taxes Quality Stores SCOTUS Severance Pay Wages

Fenwick Employment Brief - April 2014

Supreme Court Confirms FICA Taxes Must be Withheld from Severance Payments - Finding severance payments to be a form of “remuneration for employment,” the United States Supreme Court in United States v. Quality Stores,...more

4/22/2014 - ADA Disability Discrimination EEOC Employee Handbooks Employer Liability Issues Employment Policies FEHA FICA Taxes Harassment Hills and Dales Hiring & Firing NLRB Posting Requirements Reasonable Accommodation SCOTUS SEC Severance Pay Statute of Limitations Title VII Wages Whistleblowers

No Showing That “Primarily Engaged In” Requirement Met Where Executive Employee Spent More Than 50% Of Time Performing Non-Exempt...

In Guilfoyle v. Dollar Tree Stores, Inc., a federal district court in California held that an employer was unable to meet the “primarily engaged in” requirement of the executive exemption test where the employee spent more...more

2/25/2014 - Classification Employer Liability Issues Exempt-Employees Non-Exempt Employees

Walmart Potentially Liable For Wage Violations As Joint Employer Of Subcontractors’ Employees

Finding that ample evidence existed that Walmart exercised control over the working conditions of the workers employed by Walmart’s warehouse subcontractors, a California federal district court in Carrillo v. Schneider...more

2/24/2014 - Contractors Employer Liability Issues Subcontractors Wage and Hour Wages Wal-Mart

Age Discrimination Claim Survives Dismissal Where Questions Existed Regarding Adequacy Of Job Performance And Employee Presented...

Reversing a trial court’s decision in favor of the employer, a California Court of Appeals in Cheal v. El Camino Hospital held that a former employee may present her age discrimination claim to a jury because there were...more

2/21/2014 - Age Discrimination Appeals Hiring & Firing Poor Job Performance Termination

Access Of Computer System With Log-In Credentials Is Not Unlawful “Hacking”

A California federal court in Enki Corporation v. Freedman held that a former employee’s access of the employer’s computer systems through his log-in credentials did not amount to unlawful hacking under either the Computer...more

2/20/2014 - CFAA Data Protection Hackers

Fenwick Employment Brief - February 2014

A California federal court in Enki Corporation v. Freedman held that a former employee’s access of the employer’s computer systems through his log-in credentials did not amount to unlawful hacking under either the Computer...more

2/19/2014 - Age Discrimination Confidentiality Agreements Exempt-Employees Former Employee Hackers Non-Exempt Employees Unemployment Wage and Hour

Fenwick Employment Brief - September 2013: Wrongful Termination Claims Fail Where Employer Thoroughly Investigated Work...

In Kodwavi v. Intercontinental Hotels Group Resources, Inc., a federal district court in California determined that a hotel employee was not entitled to have his claims of national origin discrimination and retaliation go to...more

9/24/2013 - Discrimination Internal Investigations National Origin Retaliation Termination

Fenwick Employment Brief - September 2013: New A & F’s Appearance Policy Violates Employee’s Religious Rights

In EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc. dba Hollister Co California, LLC, a federal district court in California recently held that Abercrombie & Fitch’s “Look Policy” violated a part-time associate’s religious rights...more

9/23/2013 - EEOC Religion Religious Discrimination Undue Hardship Workplace Attire

Fenwick Employment Brief - September 2013: EEOC Sued for Unauthorized Mass Solicitation E-mail to Company Employees

After sending 1,330 e-mails to employees of Case New Holland, Inc. and its affiliates in an alleged effort to solicit plaintiffs to commence a class action lawsuit, the federal EEOC found itself on the receiving end of a...more

9/20/2013 - ADEA EEOC Email Employer Liability Issues

Fenwick Employment Brief - September 2013: Findings that Employee Violated Company Policies were not an Admission of Legal...

In Oliver v. Microsoft Corp., a federal district court in California ruled that Microsoft’s internal determination that the plaintiff’s supervisor violated the company’s discrimination and retaliation policies was not an...more

9/19/2013 - Admissions Corporate Counsel Disability Discrimination Discrimination Gender Discrimination Internal Investigations Microsoft Retaliation Supervisors

Fenwick Employment Brief - September 2013: New California Law Clarifies that "Sexual Desire" not required for Sexual Harassment...

As mentioned in last month’s FEB, California recently enacted a new law clarifying that a plaintiff alleging sexual harassment is not required to show that the alleged harassment was motivated by sexual desire. Governor Jerry...more

9/18/2013 - Employer Liability Issues Harassment New Legislation Sexual Harassment

Fenwick Employment Brief - September 2013

As mentioned in last month’s FEB, California recently enacted a new law clarifying that a plaintiff alleging sexual harassment is not required to show that the alleged harassment was motivated by sexual desire. Governor Jerry...more

9/17/2013 - Attorney's Fees Back Pay EEOC Harassment Jerry Brown Jury Verdicts New Legislation Religious Discrimination Retaliation Sexual Harassment Wage and Hour Workplace Attire

Fenwick Employment Brief - May 2013: Software Programmer Criminally Charged For Hacking Former Employer's Network

The federal Department of Justice recently filed criminal charges against a 41-year old software programmer and system manager who hacked into his former employer's computer network, causing $90,000 in damage. The complaint...more

5/16/2013 - Criminal Sanctions Hackers Software Developers

Fenwick Employment Brief - May 2013: Unreimbursed Expense May Result in Minimum Wage Violation, But Not a Labor Code § 450 Private...

In Sanchez v. Aerogroup, the plaintiff alleged that as a condition of her employment she was required to purchase at least eight pairs of shoes from her employer without reimbursement. She asserted violations of both minimum...more

5/16/2013 - Minimum Wage Reimbursements Unpaid Wages Wage and Hour

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