How California Employers Should Inform Employees of Their Legal Rights

By: JML Law | January 10, 2023.
How California Employers Should Inform Employees of Their Legal Rights

Employers in California have a legal obligation to inform their employees of their various rights and protections under state and federal law. This includes informing workers of their rights related to discrimination, harassment, wage and hour, and safety and health.

Here are five steps that California employers can take to fulfill their obligations and ensure their employees are informed of their legal rights:

Provide written information

Employers should provide employees with written information about their rights, such as through an employee handbook or workplace posters. This information should include the employees’ rights under state and federal anti-discrimination and anti-harassment laws, as well as their rights related to minimum wage, overtime, and meal and rest breaks.

Display workplace posters

California employers are required to display posters in the workplace that inform employees of their rights and protections under state and federal law. This includes posters related to the minimum wage, overtime, workers’ compensation, and the right to take time off to vote.

Be aware that employers aren’t necessarily permitted to choose any posters they wish when displaying information about worker rights. The U.S. Department of Labor issues official posters outlining the rights of employees, and occasionally updates said posters to reflect new laws. It’s important that employers display the most up-to-date versions of these official posters.

Provide training to supervisors and managers

Supervisors and managers play a critical role in preventing and addressing discrimination, harassment, and retaliation in the workplace. Employers should provide training to these individuals on these topics, as well as on how to respond to employee complaints and take appropriate corrective action.

Offer language assistance

Employers should take steps to ensure that all employees, regardless of their language background, have access to information about their rights and protections. This may include providing written materials in different languages or offering language assistance during training and other communication.

Regularly review and update policies

As the law evolves, it is important for employers to regularly review and update their policies and procedures related to employee rights and protections. This may include updating employee handbooks, posters, and training materials to ensure that they reflect the latest legal developments and best practices.

Why Taking These Steps is Important

Employment law is complex. This is partially due to the fact that, in California, both federal law and a robust Labor Code define the rights of employees.

Thus, if employees aren’t thoroughly informed of their rights, it may be possible for an employer to take advantage of them by breaking the law without the employee even necessarily realizing it. This is less likely to happen if an employee is fully informed of their rights as a worker in California.

Unfortunately, some employers nevertheless continue to violate federal employment laws, state employment laws, or both. If you’re a worker whose employer has broken such laws, review your case with a California employment attorney at JML Law to discuss potential legal options. Get started today by contacting us online or calling us at 818-610-8800.

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