1. August 1, 2017

    Apps to Watch as Kids Return to School

    BY: Cathie Fields, Amy Estrada

    As schools reopen for the new year, many students will arrive with smartphones in their pockets or backpacks, loaded with apps that can create headaches for parents, teachers, and administrators. Some apps, by design, allow kids to hide images and data, and even the existence of the apps themselves. Many apps cost nothing and require […] more

  2. May 15, 2017

    Ransomware: An Ever-Evolving Cyber Threat

    BY: Tiffany Tran, Cathie Fields

    Ransomware is a profitable criminal enterprise that continues to expand while targeting the education sector. Ransomware is a form of damaging software used by hackers to prevent or limit users from accessing the user’s own system, either by locking the system’s screen or by locking the files. It’s called ransomware because the attackers demand to […] more

  3. April 3, 2017

    Statements on Public Social Media Can Be Protected Under SLAPP Laws

    BY: Amy Estrada, Cathie Fields

    California’s SLAPP (strategic lawsuit against public participation) laws are intended to prevent litigation filed for the improper purpose of censoring, intimidating, or silencing critics. (Code of Civil Procedure § 425.16.)  A defendant in a lawsuit that may improperly silence his speech may file an “anti-SLAPP” motion in the case, designed to be an efficient and […] more

  4. March 22, 2017

    Publicly Accessible Online Content May Require Closed Captioning

    BY: Shawna McKee, Cathie Fields, Sharon Ormond

    Beginning in 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice investigated complaints against the University of California, Berkeley, that Berkeley’s free audio and video online content was not fully accessible to individuals with disabilities. The primary complaint was filed by the National Association for the Deaf on behalf of members of the public who alleged they could […] more

  5. January 30, 2017

    New Schoolbus Safety Requirements Include Child-Alert Technology

    BY: Alyssa Ruiz de Esparza, Cathie Fields

    Senate Bill 1072, approved by the Governor in September 2016, brings to fruition efforts to guard against students being left unattended on a schoolbus. (Statutes of 2016, ch. 721.) By the 2018-2019 school year, schoolbuses and other qualifying vehicles must be equipped with an alarm system that essentially forces bus drivers to check the bus […] more

  6. January 9, 2017

    Ring in the New Year with a Revised I-9 Form

    BY: Cathie Fields

    In November 2016, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services published its new I-9 form (click here).  Employers may immediately begin using the new form for new hires and reverifications, and must stop using the old form (identified as version “03/08/13” in the lower left corner) by January 21, 2017. All employers — public and private […] more

  7. October 11, 2016

    FPPC Increases Gift Limit for Calendar Years 2017 and 2018 to $470

    BY: Cathie Fields, Warren Kinsler

    The Political Reform Act imposes limits on gifts and payments received by local elected officers and designated employees of local government agencies—individuals who are required to file statements of economic interests (aka Form 700) under a local agency’s conflict of interest code. A “gift” is a payment or other benefit that confers a personal benefit […] more

  8. September 19, 2016

    Workplace Disability Issues: California Court of Appeal Suggests, without Deciding, Employers Must Accommodate Employees’ Association with Disabled Individuals

    BY: Jacquelyn Takeda, Cathie Fields

    On August 29, 2016, a California Court of Appeal backed away from an earlier a decision that employers must accommodate employees based on their association with individuals with a disability. (Castro-Ramirez v. Dependable Highway Express (Aug. 29, 2016) 2016 WL 45066089.) Before the court’s groundbreaking holding in April 2016, as reported in this post, no court had […] more

  9. August 26, 2016

    U.S. Department of Labor Revises Two Required Posters

    BY: Cathie Fields, Alyssa Ruiz de Esparza

    New regulations from the U.S. Department of Labor require employers (public and private) to post a revised Federal Minimum Wage poster and a revised Federal Employee Polygraph Act poster effective August 1, 2016. The Federal Minimum Wage Poster now includes a section describing the rights of nursing mothers under the Fair Labor Standards Act. It […] more

  10. August 5, 2016

    IRS Issues Proposed Regulations on Eligible Benefit “Opt-Out” Arrangements

    BY: Cathie Fields, William Diedrich

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010 made unprecedented changes to health benefit plans. The most sweeping ACA provisions took effect in 2014; other provisions have been delayed from their original implementation target dates. The Internal Revenue Service, the agency responsible for enforcing many of the ACA’s tax implications, has issued various regulations under the […] more