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California Employment Discrimination Blog

Prime Healthcare will pay $65 million for overbilling Medicare

Many people go to the doctor or to a hospital in California. It is inevitable that people will get injured or sick and require medical treatment. As these people know, medical treatment is also very expensive. However, if the person has health insurance, most likely they will not need to pay the entire bill. Many people receive Medicare as their form of insurance. Ultimately, the hospital or clinic will bill Medicare for the expenses, but in many cases, they negotiate with Medicare for how much the hospital will actually receive.

Many times, it is less than what the total medical bill, and therefore, hospitals have the incentive to change documentation to bill Medicare for more than what was actually performed. This is illegal, but one major medical provider recently was accused of doing this.

Gender discrimination still an issue in hiring, promotions

People in California regardless of their gender need to work in order to earn an income. Most of these jobs can be done equally well by either men or women. However, historically and still today women are paid less than men doing the same jobs. This is a clear sign of how gender discrimination has negatively affected women and how difficult it is to change these trends that are rooted deep within the workforce.

The wage gap between men and women has been well-documented, but the discrimination goes even further than that. Women occupy fewer executive and senior management positions than men. This is another way that companies are keeping women from having the same economic opportunities as men.

California de minimus doctrine and your "off-the-clock" wages

A recent verdict in Troester v. Starbucks Corporation ignited a shift in off-the-clock wages.

Douglas Troester, a manager at a Starbucks coffee store in California, claimed that the corporation failed to compensate him for the time he spent completing miniscule tasks related to his position. Each shift, over 17 months of employment, he claimed Starbucks required him to clock out and still complete various necessary business requirements.

Employment law, severance packages and ADEA waivers

Over time people in California will continue to get older, but that does not mean that once they hit a specific age that they automatically lose the ability to do their jobs. Also, many older employees need to keep working in order to pay their bills and provide for their families. However, many companies feel that it is either cheaper or better for the company to keep their workforce younger. Therefore, they will offer severance packages and other incentives to get their older employees to quit.

Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), older employees are protected from being discriminated against or fired based on their age, and by themselves, these severance packages would violate that law for wrongful termination. However, the law also allows the employee to waive their ADEA claims in exchange for the severance package or other form of compensation. In order for it to be a valid waiver of their ADEA claims, though, it must meet certain criteria.

Former transgender employee sues Starbucks for discrimination

Over time California has progressed to accept more and more people of different genders, sexual orientation and gender identification. However, there is still work to do and not all people are accepting of those going through gender transition or those who have fully transitioned. Therefore, the laws in California have been expanded to protect these individuals from discrimination and harassment in the workplace. However, despite the laws these individuals still face issues.

This was highlighted in a recent case filed by a former employee of Starbucks claiming gender discrimination and harassment. The employee had worked at a couple of different Starbucks locations in the area prior to transitioning to a female. She had always been a good employee, but after she notified her manager that she was in the transition process, she states that the work conditions changed dramatically. She lost hours and her boss refused to use female pronouns when referring to her and created a hostile work environment.

There are many national origin-based EEOC charges each year

There are many things that people in California have control over. People can decide which kind of food they will eat, which type of car they will drive, which job offers they accept and many other things. However, as people are aware, there are many things that are out of their control as well. People cannot control how old they are, the color of their skin, their gender, which country they were born in or where their family is from, whether they have a disability and many other things.

Due to the fact that people cannot control those types of things, it is illegal for employers to discriminate against those employees based on the things they cannot control. As mentioned above there are multiple different aspects of a person which could be discriminated against, but the statistics show that one of the more prevalent ones is discrimination based on national origin.

Former school employees get $3 million in retaliation case

People in California make money in many different ways. Most of them have a job and earn their income through that employment and most of the time the way that they make their money is a legitimate way to make money. However, there are some who abuse their position as a business owners and make money through illegal means. Many times people within the company are aware of the illegal tactics and may feel obligated to expose the corruption.

This is exactly what an ex-superintendent and another executive of a school district did when they learned of corruption within the school district. They discovered that the person in charge of the school district's budget was giving very lucrative contracts to friends and not going through the proper ways of giving the contracts. The ex-superintendent and other executive brought their concerns to the board, but were silenced and fired a short time afterward.

Initiating an employment complaint in California

Everything about a new job usually looks so promising in the beginning. You may have sought out and applied for a position that interested you and for which you were qualified. You made it through the interview process and, finally, you were offered and accepted the job. At this stage, many people feel like the hardest part - the finding and securing of the job - is probably done. Unfortunately, as many of the clients we have worked with over the years could tell you, this is not always the case.  

As a firm that has chosen to place our focus specifically on employment laws in California, we are often approached by workers of every career who feel that they are being discriminated against or harassed by their employer. And in many of those cases, the employees who are reaching out to us may be aware that they need to take steps to file a formal complaint against their employer in relation to the discrimination they have experienced, but often, they know little about how or where they need to begin.  

Former employee files whistleblower claim against telecom firm

The main goal of most companies in California is to make as much money as possible. Most go about this in a legal way and simply use marketing and advertising to boost sales. However, not all companies follow the legal ways of promoting a business and will resort to potentially illegal tactics to boost sales or gain an edge on the competition. When this occurs, employees within the company may be asked to participate in the illegal activity. However, these employees do not have an obligation to do this and can refuse to do so.

The company may be upset by this and retaliate against the employee. This is known as whistleblower retaliation and is illegal as well. This is what recently occurred to an employee of telecom firm, Huawei, when he refused to participate in a scheme to attempt to obtain trade secrets from competing telecom firms. The employee was asked to pose as an employee of a fake company to gain entry into a summit on Facebook to take information from the other companies.

Signs that one may be the victim of sex discrimination

People in California go to work each day and do their job to earn income for themselves and their families. Some people also go to work with the expectation that if they do a good job and put in their time for their company, they will be able to move up or use their experience to gain a better position at a different company. However, some people have found that it is harder for them to do this than others.

Unfortunately, women have experienced sex discrimination and been stuck in the same position or have been treated differently than men. There are signs that women can look for to demonstrate that they have been the victim of sex discrimination in the workplace.

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