In 2021, there are new updated employment laws that impact California employers. To shed light on these regulations, our 2021 Employment Law series is designed to help employers navigate these significant changes, like Assembly Bill 1947, so they can stay compliant with California law and thrive.

California legislators have extended the statute of limitations for wage, hour discharge, and discrimination complaints under Assembly Bill 1947 at the beginning of 2021. These new regulations bring significant implications to California employers, who must continue to stay cautious when it comes to employee termination. Here is a quick guide to the revisions employers should be aware of.

What is Assembly Bill 1947?

Signed by Governor Gavin Newson on September 30, 2020, Assembly Bill 1947 (AB1947) aims to protect Californian employees against any form of discrimination in the workplace. Previously, AB1947 authorized workers who “believe that they have been discharged or discriminated against in violation of any law enforced by the Labor Commissioner to file a complaint with the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DSLE) within 6 months after the occurrence of the violation.”

However, effective on January 1st, 2021, new revisions to AB1947 amend the labor code in two main ways:

  • Lengthens the period of time in which workers can file complaints with the DSLE; and
  • Authorizes a court to award reasonable attorney fees to those who prevail in a whistleblower action under Labor Code § 1102.5.

Assembly Bill 1947 New Regulations in 2021

As businesses and workplaces begin to reopen, here are the new 2021 AB1947 regulations that  employers should be aware of to protect themselves from liabilities:

  • AB1947 lengthens the time frame from six months to one year for employees who want to file a claim of discriminatory discharge in violation of any law under the jurisdiction of the Labor Commissioner.
  • AB1947 prohibits employers from retaliating against employees who report any violation of the labor laws. The move is aimed at motivating employees to report cases and get the law adhered to at all times.
  • AB1947 allows the court to award attorney fees to a plaintiff “who brings a successful action for a violation” of the law’s whistleblower protections.

What AB1947 Means for Employers

With the new regulations put forth under AB1947, employers should be more aware of their company policies on the termination and dismissal of employees. We recommend that employers examine and amend their policies to safeguard themselves against potential lawsuits and remain compliant with the new regulations.

If you are having trouble navigating the legal requirements for AB1947, or any other employment matter, please don’t hesitate to contact Hackler Flynn & Associates.

DISCLAIMER: Content within this post should not be considered legal advice and is for informational purposes only. Communications made through this post do not create an attorney-client relationship. Hackler Flynn & Associates is not responsible for any content that you may access from third-party resources that may be accessed through or linked to this post. Hackler Flynn & Associates is only licensed to practice in California.

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