1. November 9, 2015

    IRS Announces Identity Theft Protection Services Are Not Taxable to Data Breach Victims

    BY: Cathie Fields, Peter Schaffert

    On August 13, 2015, the IRS issued Announcement 2015-22, addressing the tax treatment of identity protection services for data breach victims. The Announcement states that when victims receive free identity protection services from an organization that suffered a data breach, the IRS will not assert the value of the identity protection services is includible in […] more

  2. November 2, 2015

    Can an Employer Require an Employee to Take Medication as a Condition of Employment?

    BY: Jacquelyn Takeda, Cathie Fields

    Your employee is diagnosed with epilepsy after suffering a seizure at work. After a period of leave, the employee is cleared by a physician to return to work. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), you must bring the employee back to work and provide reasonable accommodations to enable him to perform the essential functions […] more

  3. October 28, 2015

    Governor Signs Bill Integrating and Updating Sexual Health and HIV/AIDS Education

    BY: Peter Denno, Mark Bresee

    The California Legislature recently made significant changes to the California Comprehensive Sexual Health and HIV/AIDS Prevention Education Act (Education Code § 51930 et seq.).  Under Assembly Bill 329 (Weber), which was signed into law by Governor Brown on October 1, 2015, the Act will be renamed the “California Healthy Youth Act” when it takes effect on […] more

  4. October 26, 2015

    City’s Legislative Body Has No Protectable Copyright Interest in Video Recordings of Public Meetings

    BY: Cathie Fields, Lisa Allred

    Meetings of school boards, city councils, county boards of supervisors, community college boards and other “legislative bodies” are open to the public, with minor exceptions, under the Ralph M. Brown Act. Members of the public have access to these meetings and may use them as a forum to criticize the work of the legislative bodies. […] more

  5. October 21, 2015

    Failure to Enforce a Proper Litigation Hold for Text Messages Can Be Costly

    BY: Scott J. Sachs, Lisa Allred, Cathie Fields

    As the business world becomes more digital and mobile, the swords and shields used in litigation often take the form of electronically stored information. We frequently advise clients and remind opposing counsel to preserve all documents, including electronically stored information, when they reasonably know that litigation might ensue or as soon a potential claim is […] more

  6. October 16, 2015

    U.S. Departments of Education and Justice Release English Learner Tool Kit to Assist States and School Districts Comply with Their Legal Obligations

    BY: Jessica Armijo, Gabriel A. Sandoval

    On September 21, 2015, the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice (collectively, the “Departments”) released an English Learner Tool Kit—a resource to assist state and local educational agencies meet their legal obligations to English Learners (ELs) and ensure ELs have access to a quality public education.  The release of the EL Tool Kit comes at […] more

  7. October 14, 2015

    Student Board Members Gain Rights as Governor Signs SB 532

    BY: Cathie Fields, Kevin Fannan

    On September 21, 2015, Governor Brown approved legislation expanding, for the first time in over 20 years, the rights of student members of school district governing boards. Beginning January 1, 2016, Senate Bill 532 will set a 60-day time limit for a board to respond to a petition from students to add a student trustee, […] more

  8. October 12, 2015

    Unions Making Efforts to Protect Agency Fees in Light of Upcoming Supreme Court Case

    BY: Gilbert Castro, Todd Goluba

    On June 30, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to take up the case of Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association – a case that challenges California’s “agency fee” laws.  While this case will not be heard and decided until next year, public sector unions in California are already mobilizing a response to this potential threat […] more

  9. October 9, 2015

    What to Look for in a Cyber Insurance Policy

    BY: Jessica Armijo, Lindsay Thorson, Scott J. Sachs

    As one means of managing the cost of a data security breach (when confidential electronically stored information is disclosed), public and private organizations may purchase “cyber insurance” policies. The purchaser seeks to limit the substantial costs involved in investigating and remedying a breach. However, such policies (which are relatively new to the marketplace) have considerable […] more

  10. September 28, 2015

    Requesting Accommodation Is a Protected Activity

    BY: Lexe Davidson, Chesley Quaide

    On July 16, 2015, Governor Brown approved an amendment to Government Code section 12940 prohibiting an employer or other covered entity from retaliating, or otherwise discriminating, against a person for requesting accommodation of his or her disability or religious beliefs, regardless of whether the accommodation request was granted. The legislation stems from the Court of […] more