Articles, news & events

Read the latest news from The Scali Law Firm, including legal alerts and event listings.

Cautionary Reminder: employers must reimburse employees for work-related use of personal mobile devices

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In the course of assisting employers with compliance-related matters, we frequently encounter issues of concern where employers require or expect employees to use their personal mobile devices for work-related matters. In the customer service-intensive environment of a car dealership, employees are expected to be readily available to customers, and it is the norm for salespersons and service advisors to provide customers with their personal cell phone numbers for ready access. However, where the employee is required or expected to use his/her personal device to perform work duties, the employer is obligated under California law to reimburse the employee for any costs associated with such use.

Criminal history in employment decisions

How can employers legally use it?

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The Fair Employment and Housing Commission has issued new regulations for California employers regarding criminal history inquiries that took effect July 1, 2017. These regulations have many similarities with prior guidance issued by the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on the same subject. The new rules do not prohibit employers from considering criminal information altogether but mandate a process for employers to follow in using such information in an employment decision.

Scali Law Firm expands to the Bay Area, adding to its trial and regulatory bench

Seasoned defense trial attorney, Bruce Nye, tapped to lead the Oakland office of California’s top automotive law firm

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To add to its Northern California presence and further deepen its trial bench, The Scali Law Firm today announced that it has added Bruce Nye as Attorney Of Counsel. Nye has tried over fifty jury and bench cases, including the landmark Proposition 65 case, Baxter Healthcare Corporation v. Denton (2004) 120 Cal.App.4th 333.

RACER consulting firm formed to guide and inform auto dealers

The Scali Law Firm partners with Southland Motor Car Dealers Association

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Starting this month, auto dealers struggling to stay on top of a shifting and increasingly complex quagmire of regulations and rulings can get help and guidance from the RACER consulting firm. RACER (Retail Automotive Compliance & Ethics Resource) is not an outside auditor. For a flat monthly fee, it trains management on how to implement and manage compliance policies and procedures in the areas of human resources, F&I, OSHA, sales and BAR.

Bulk sales laws

A primer

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One of the key issues in any sale of dealership assets is whether a bulk sale notice is required under California law prior to the closing of the transaction. It is important to understand when a bulk sale notice is required because the failure to give the notice when required can result in potentially serious adverse consequences for both the buyer and the seller.

Arbitration update

Tips for drafting enforceable arbitration agreements with California employees

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In 2000, the California Supreme Court set forth the standards of unconscionability applicable to invalidate mandatory arbitration agreements in the employment context in Armendariz v. Foundation Health Psychcare Services, Inc. In the past years, litigation of arbitration provisions has boomed. In 2011, the United States Supreme Court decided AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, finding that the Federal Arbitration Act preempted California’s Discover Bank case rule prohibiting class action waivers in arbitration agreements. However, the enforceability of class action waivers has since been challenged on several occasions.

Complying with administrative wage garnishment orders for unpaid federal student loan debt

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What is Administrative Wage Garnishment? Who can order one? How do you comply with it? And what happens if you don't? We look at this debt collection process that allows a federal agency to order an employer to withhold up to 15 percent of an employee's disposable income to pay a nontax delinquent debt owed to the agency, without a court judgment or order.

Using an outside staffing agency

What you need to know

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Using a staffing agency for certain job categories at an auto dealer, i.e., porters and janitors, may be a convenient and efficient way to meet staffing needs and screen potential future employees without the administrative burdens of hiring and payroll. But using a staffing agency does not create a free pass for the dealership. Existing law allocates substantial employment practices compliance burdens equally to staffing agencies and their clients, especially where a “joint employer” relationship exists. Here are some issues to remain mindful of...

Leveraging adversity with flooring lenders

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Most dealers would soon go out of business if they lost their flooring line. And flooring agreements are often strongly one-sided in the flooring lender’s favor. But this doesn’t mean that a dealership is entirely at its flooring lender’s mercy when the lender decides to turn the screws. In fact, in some circumstances, over-reaching by the flooring lender may provide a dealership the opening it needs to keep its flooring line in place, even if only for long enough to find an alternative lender.