California Court of Appeal

California Court of Appeal Reads Employment Agreement in Conjunction with a Sale of Business Transaction Yet Refuses to Apply “Sale of Business” Exception to its Non-Compete Clause

People at a Table

On August 24, 2012, a California Court of Appeal clarified when an employment agreement can satisfy the “sale of business” exception to California’s general ban on post-employment non-compete provisions. The Court held that when a stock purchase agreement’s non-compete clause already adequately protects the goodwill of the sold business, any inconsistent and additional non-compete protection in a related employment agreement with the purchasing company may not be enforceable. The holding signals that an employment agreement’s non-compete covenant does not automatically qualify for the “sale of business” exception  simply because it is part of the same transaction as a stock purchase agreement. READ MORE

Harris v. Superior Court, No. B195121 (Cal. App. July 23, 2012)

Is it “here we go again” for Harris? In the latest round of the donnybrook that is the administrative exemption in California, a California Court of Appeal in Harris v. Super. Ct., No. B195121 (Cal. App. July 23, 2012), held that the plaintiffs, insurance claims adjusters, were—as a matter of law—not exempt from California’s overtime laws under California’s administrative exemption. After a trial court certified a partial class of California claims adjusters, but denied plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment, the parties appealed the decision all the way to the California Supreme Court. READ MORE

California Court of Appeal Rules that Advanced Sales Commissions May Be Recovered By the Employer

Coins and Hourglass

On July 10, 2012, a California court of appeal held that an employer’s practice and policy of charging back advanced sales commissions following a canceled service agreement does not violate California law. The Court held that these advanced commissions are not wages; thus they do not come within the ambit of California Code of Civil Procedure section 223 which prohibits the secret payment of lower wages and exposes the employer to PAGA penalties. READ MORE

California Court of Appeal Says No to Class Certification of Independent Contractors

3 Minutes to 12:00

The California Court of Appeal has affirmed a trial court’s order denying class certification on the alleged misclassification of independent contractors. The Court of Appeal provides a lengthy analysis of ascertainability and predominance of common issues of law and fact under California’s class action laws.  READ MORE

CA Court Holds Employment Arbitration Agreement Waiving Class and Representative Actions Enforceable

Gavel and Hundred-Dollar Bill

In Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC, (Cal. Ct. App. June 4, 2012), the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District affirmed a decision to compel individual arbitration of wage-and-hour claims pursuant to an employment agreement that contained class and representative action waivers, holding that the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion was controlling. READ MORE