CA EMPLOYMENT ESSENTIALS (CEE) is a 6 module training series of employment essentials focusing on regulatory compliance and HR best practices. Hiring to Separation: What Management and HR MUST KNOW!

MANAGEMENT EXCELLENCE SERIES (MES) is an 8 module training series focusing on practical leadership and communication skills to help managers DEVELOP OR REFINE THEIR EFFECTIVENESS AS LEADERS!

Dates of Upcoming Series:

CEE Begins: October 10

MES Begins: September 4

TPO's popular prescheduled three-hour (9am - noon) workshops are presented on a wide range of important regulatory and leadership topics. Many are available to attend via webinar.

Dates of Upcoming Workshops:

Health Care Reform: December 3

Team Communication: November 6

TPO brings you periodic briefings presented by knowledgeable subject matter experts on a variety of timely employment topics.

Dates of Upcoming Briefings:

Auditing Your HR Function: September 17

TPO's H&D prevention training goes above and beyond to address all forms of harassment and discrimination (age, race, religion, disability, etc.) that today's managers must be prepared to prevent and address.

Dates of Upcoming H & D:

Harassment & Discrimination Prevention: October 22 & December 12

Spanish Language Harassment & Discrimination Prevention: 
September 12 & October 16


      by Melissa Irwin, SPHR-CA, TPO

2. HR Q & A

      by Chris Hawkins, SPHR-CA, TPO


      by Melissa Irwin, SPHR-CA, TPO


by Melissa Irwin, SPHR-CA of TPO

Want More Details?
Click on each bill to be directed to a tracking website. From there you can read the actual text of the bill!


May 31 marked an important deadline for CA legislation to pass the house in which it was introduced. Of the employment-related bills TPO was following, only 2 remain active.

CA Pending Legislation –

Indexing Minimum Wage Increases (AB 10) – Would raise the minimum wage $1.25 over the next three years and thereafter index the minimum wage based on inflation. Status: 8/12/13 in Senate committee.

Additional Protected Classification for Caregivers (SB 404) – Would expand the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) to include a protected classification for any person who is perceived, or associated with an individual that provides "medical or supervisory" care to a family member (child, parent, spouse, domestic partner, or in-law). Would be applicable to employers with 5 or more employees. Status: 7/3/13 in Assembly committee.

Social Media – Public Employers (AB 25) – Would expand existing law to public sector. Existing law prohibits a private employer from requiring or requesting an employee or applicant for employment to disclose a username or password for the purpose of accessing personal social media, to access personal social media in the presence of the employer, or to divulge any personal social media. Status: 6/25/13 in Senate committee.




Federal Pending Legislation –

The Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act (POWADA) (H.R. 2852 and S. 1391) – Would amend the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 and other laws to clarify appropriate standards for Federal employment discrimination and retaliation claims, and for other purposes. Last Movement: 7/30/13 for both.

Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)
(S. 815 and H.R. 1755) – Would prohibit employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.. Last Movement: 7/10/13 and 4/25/13 respectively.

The Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act (S. 744) – Would provide for comprehensive immigration reform and for other purposes, including: enhancement of border security and mandatory enrollment in the E-Verify program; legalization and a "pathway to citizenship" for unlawfully present individuals who entered the U.S. before December 31, 2011; and significant expansion of employment-based immigration coupled with elimination of the visa lottery and reduction of family-based immigration options. Last Movement: Passed Senate 6/27/13

The Flexibility for Working Families Act (H.R. 2559, S. 1248) – Would provide employees with a statutory right to request flexible work terms and conditions, including: (1) the number of hours the employee is required to work; (2) the times when the employee is required to work or be on call for work; (3) where the employee is required to work; or (4) the amount of notification the employee receives of work schedule assignments. Last Movement: 6/27/13 for both.

The Password Protection Act (H.R. 2077) – Would prevent employers from requiring job applicants and current employees from disclosing their passwords to their social media sites as a condition of employment. Last Movement: 5/21/13

Working Families Flexibility Act (H.R. 1406) – Would allow non-exempt private sector employees to opt for paid time off in lieu of payment for overtime hours worked. Employees would earn compensatory time off ("comp time") at a rate of at least one-and-one-half hours per hour of overtime worked, up to 160 hours per year, and would be able to cash out at any time. An employer would cash out any unused, accrued comp time at the end of each year. Last Movement: Passed House 5/8/13

Family and Medical Leave Inclusion Act (H.R. 1751 and S. 846) – Would amend the Family and Medical Leave Act to permit leave to care for a same-sex spouse, domestic partner, parent-in-law, adult child, sibling, grandchild, or grandparent who has a serious health condition. Last Movement: 4/25/13 for both.



Need a reminder on the federal legislative process?
Click the image for Schoolhouse Rock! "I'm Just A Bill" reminder from the 70's.

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by Chris Hawkins, SPHR-CA of TPO

Many of our members and clients have asked us, “is missed work time for worker’s compensation related medical visits compensable time?”  As is with a lot of legislation and regulatory requirements, the answer is, “it depends.”  According to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and FLSA medical treatment parameters, time spent by an employee waiting for and receiving medical attention, either on the premises or at the direction of the employer during the employee’s normal working hours constitutes time worked.  Therefore, the employee must be paid for the time, including the time spent to travel to the treatment site and time spent waiting for treatment.  This requirement only applies to situations in which medical attention has been sought for work-related reasons, such as a physical exam as a condition of employment or medical care for a workplace incurred or related injury or illness.

The California Department of Industrial Relations' (CA DIR) workers' compensation division supports the above requirement and like the DOL, excludes a doctor visit or follow up appointment for the purpose of medical verification. These visits are excluded because they allow the employee to be paid for sick leave that is not otherwise compensable. A medical verification appointment is scheduled and taken at the employee's direction, not the employer's. Thus the general rule regarding follow up appointments and doctor visits is; if it's at the direction of the employer, the time is compensable and the employee must be paid for it. If the appointment or visit is at the direction of the physician or by election of the employee, it is not compensable and the employee does not have to be paid for the time.

However, both the DOL and CA DIR explain that there are instances when an employer may be obligated, or may want to consider paying injured employees for doctor's appointments outside of working hours, or for those that were scheduled at the direction of the physician or election of the employee. It's also prudent to take care of and support valued employees as this influences positive employee relations, improves retention, and helps reduce the risk of additional legal claims.

For further discussion or information, contact your TPO Consultant and/or click on the CA DIR link below:

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…when the time is paid or unpaid.

by Melissa Irwin, SPHR-CA of TPO

While some employers choose to voluntarily pay a premium to employees who are on-call or standby, other employers looking to reduce employment-related expenses may want to explore if such time can be unpaid.

At issue is if the employer is controlling what the employee is able to do while on-call or on standby.

Example of Time
NOT Worked and
therefore UNPAID:

An employee is required to carry a phone or radio with them at all times and is expected to return the call within a reasonable amount of time (5-15 minutes) to determine the nature of the call and what action to take.

During this on-call or standby time, the employee is allowed to participate in their own activities (movies, beach, restaurants, etc.) providing they do not go beyond a reasonable distance from the possible worksite (within 20-30 minutes).

Example of Time Worked and therefore PAID:

Requiring a non-exempt employee to stay at home with a large, non-portable radio and be within earshot of the radio at all times and the ability to call back to work within seconds.

If A Non-Exempt Employee Is Called Back To The Worksite:

If a Non-Exempt employee answers the call via phone or e-mail and does NOT have to travel to the worksite:

If you would like to discuss this issue further, please give your TPO Consultant a call!

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Susan Mueller, President

AAI has been a TPO member since 2011. How do you feel TPO contributes to the operation's success?

"We have been working with TPO for the past year and a half. With their help, I have been able to take a step back from some of the day to day human resource challenges and focus on AAI's strategic business needs. We now have a current Employee Handbook, HR Administration Kit, and the HR expertise we need – when we need it. To help with promoting positive relationships at work, TPO presented an Enhanced Communications seminar - including how to identify and work with different personality types. Having TPO moderate timely one-on-one meetings to help resolve any misunderstandings has also been very useful. This resource has served us well. I am glad to have TPO as part of our team!"

Based in San Jose, AAI is a full service design firm, specializing in interior architecture, exterior architecture and tenant planning. For over 30 years, we have provided creative, responsive design solutions that increase workplace efficiency, boost productivity, strengthen brand image, and promote our clients' ideas and services. Recognizing the power of design to transform organizations, we collaborate with our clients to develop high-performance environments that integrate visual interest and functional efficiency, project a custom and cohesive image, and respond to a wide variety of organizational challenges. Principals lead every project from start to finish, backed by the expertise of the entire firm. AAI is known and valued for delivering results. Results that meet high standards and help our clients prosper. Some of our clients include Safeway Corporate, Easton Bell Sports, Sony Electronics, Audience, and Scott's Seafood.
For More Information:

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We look forward to the opportunity to provide each of you with unlimited phone/email access, reduced consulting and training rates, eCompliance notices, attendance to our Annual Employment Law & Leadership Conference at no additional cost, and priority status when you require TPO support from any of our highly qualified team of nationally certified HR experts! Thank you for joining!

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