California Employment Law Resources
Want to know more about employment law than most attorneys? You can have all the information you need without charge in one reliable “go-to” source. Here is a carefully compiled list of selected internet websites that provide a high level credible and actionable information on employment law matters. This listing is complimentary.
Employment law is a very technical and complicated area of the law. By using this guide, anyone interested can learn a great deal online about virtually any area of employment law, including harassment, discrimination, whistleblower, wage and hour. If you have a question about employment law, chances are you can find the answer somewhere on one of the sites provided in this guide.
Using this employment guide provides a useful starting point for any analysis of employment law issues. However, there is no substitute for the advice of an experienced employment lawyer. So it’s essential that you use an attorney to handle your case. Daniel Feder, the principal of The Law Offices of Daniel Feder, is your go-to San Francisco employment law attorney.
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Your gateway to employment law starts by clicking these links. You will be directed to a webpage that lists dozens of additional links in the category you have selected. Spend 15-20 minutes clicking through the sites on this guide. You’ll be astonished at how much useful information about employment law is available for free online. It used to take a research attorney combing through stacks of books in the law library to get access to this comprehensive information. Now, it’s available to you in just seconds courtesy of attorney Daniel Feder.
General Employment Law Research
The law may be tracked to two primary sources: case law and statutes. The links in this category are excellent for finding and reading California and federal cases, statutes, bills and other authoritative sources in the area of employment law. Also, if you have a case name, or citation, you can find and download the case here. You can also use this link to find out background information on individuals.
To find an attorney, or to get more information about an attorney’s background and qualifications, use the FindLaw links below. You may look up an attorney by name, or find attorneys by area of specialization. Using this site, you can find attorneys practicing in areas from dog-bite lawsuits to bankruptcy law.
- General Sites for Legal Research
- California Law (via FindLaw.com)
- Employment Law Articles (via FindLaw.com)
- United States Law (via FindLaw.com)
- Employment Discrimination Law (via Cornell Law)
- American Law Sources Online (lawsource.com)
- Hieros Gamos (better known as HG.org)
- California Civil Discovery Law (all discovery subjects)
Administrative agencies in California play a hugely important role in developing employment law. For example, the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement interprets laws concerning wage and hour issues. OSHA determines the rules and regulations that apply to workplace safety issues. For a comprehensive linked listing to the significant administrative agencies in California that have a significant impact on the development of employment laws, use this link.
- Agricultural Labor Relations Board
- Public Employment Relations Board (PERB)
- Public Employee Retirement System
- State Teacher’s Retirement System
- State Personnel Board
- Department of Fair Employment and Housing
- Department of Rehabilitation (employees with disabilities)
- Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (includes overtime and minimum wage)
- Directory of Internet Sites of California State Agencies (select State Agency Index)
- Division of Apprenticeship Standards
- Division of Labor Statistics and Research
- Division of Occupational Safety and Health
- Employment Development Department (includes unemployment insurance)
- Employment Development Department Benefit Determination Guide (detailed guide to eligibility)
- Industrial Welfare Commission (includes wage and hour orders)
It’s important to identify the correct name of the entity that employs you. Sometimes, you can actually be employed by several entitles concurrently. To find useful information about an employer, including the correct name of the company, the registered agent for service of process, and the status of the corporation. Is your employer properly registered with the California Secretary of State? Do you really want to know who you work for? Use one of these sites to help determine who actually employs you:
- Corporate Index, California Secretary of State
- California Professional Business License Index
- Securities and Exchange Commission EDGAR Database
- Multinational Monitor
- Corporate Watch
- Hoover’s Company Profiles
There are many organizations that play an important role in advancing the rights of workers. It’s really a wonderful source of pleasure to join some of these organizations to stay informed and support the rights of employees locally and nationally. Here is a list of some of these organizations.
- CELA: The California Employment Lawyers Association is a statewide organization of attorneys representing employees in termination, discrimination, wage and hour, and other employment cases
- CAOC: Consumer Attorneys of California (California’s association of trial lawyers)
- CalChamber: California Chamber of Commerce has partnered with HRCalifornia to provide access to California employment law resources
- California Division of Occupational Safety and Health – DOSH aka Cal OSHA: The Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH), better known as Cal/OSHA, protects workers from health and safety hazards on the job in almost every workplace in California through its research and standards, enforcement, and consultation programs.
- California Department of Fair Employment & Housing – DFEH: The DFEH is the state agency charged with enforcing California’s civil rights laws. The mission of the DFEH is to protect the people of California from unlawful discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations and from hate violence.
- California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement – DLSE: The Labor Commissioner’s Office, also known as the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE), was established to adjudicate wage claims, investigate discrimination and public works complaints, and enforce Labor Code statutes and Industrial Welfare Commission orders.
- NELA: National Employment Lawyers Association (The national association of which CELA is an affiliate)
- EEOC: The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person’s race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information.
- WLL: Center for Worklife Law at Hastings Law School (The nonprofit research and advocacy group devoted to women’s advancement and to improving work/life balance for men and women)
- Workplace Fairness: (National organization helping to preserve and promote employee rights)
- AAJ: American Association for Justice
- California Local, Minority and Specialty Bar Associations
- ACLU: American Civil Liberties Union
- NLG: National Lawyers Guild
- AFL-CIO: American Federation of Labor – Congress of Industrial Organizations
- Change to Win
- California First Amendment Coalition (obtaining public records, including forms)
- The Impact Fund (supports impact litigation)
- Worksafe (California coalition for worker safety)
- Neighborhood Legal Services (selected Americans With Disabilities Act/504 cases)
- Equal Rights Advocates: (equal rights for women in the workplace and beyond)
- Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law
- National Immigration Law Center
- HRHero.com: Provides information from other source experts on state and federal employment law, pending state and federal employment legislation, benefits and compensation, including details on COBRA, ERISA, and 401(k)s, and more
- FMLA Info and Whitepaper: A great resource for information relating to the FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act)
- SHRM: Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest HR membership organization devoted to human resource management
- FindUSLaw.com: A robust section of this legal website dedicated to California and federal employment law information
- Employee Rights Law Center: From Nolo, a resource for employees about rights and options
- PracticalLaw.com: Information and resources about California employment law and labor issues
- LawInfo: provides an entire library of free legal information to help you learn about labor and employment laws including FAQ’s, forms, videos and more
Employment cases are tried first to a jury, unless the employer has been able to secure the employee’s signature on a binding arbitration provision. After the case goes up on appeal, the appellate courts examine the lower court decisions and issue written opinions. These written opinions are an important source of employment law. To find cases from the California Supreme Court or any Court of Appeals in the State of California for the last 60 days, or since 1996, click the relevant links generated by clicking the hyperlink above for California Supreme Court and Court of Appeals Decisions.
- Sixth Circuit: decisions for KY, MI, OH, TN, July 1999
- Seventh Circuit: decisions for IL, IN, WI, 1991
- Eighth Circuit: decisions for AR, IA, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD, December 1995
- Ninth Circuit: decisions for AK, AZ, CA, Guam, HI, ID, MT, NV, OR,WA, July 1995
- Tenth Circuit: decisions after 1995 to present for CO, KS, NM, OK, UT, WY., October 1997
- Eleventh Circuit: decisions for AL, FL, GA, November 1995
- D.C. Circuit: decisions for DC, March 1995
- Federal Circuit: decisions from MSPB & other agencies, August 1995
- United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit (Includes Manual of Model Civil Jury Instructions)
Almost all of California employment enacted employment laws are found in the California Labor Code, Insurance Code and Government Code. These complete codes may be found here on this link. These Codes are called “statutes.” The California Labor Commissioner Orders pertaining to the Labor Code is another important source of California employment law. These opinions, which may also be found here, are binding and of huge importance. In the event of a lawsuit, disputes concerning what information may be discovered, and the process of obtaining that information, is identified in the cases decided under the Discovery Act, which is also found here.
- California Statutes and Administrative Regulations
- All California Statutes (most employment law statutes are found in the Labor Code, the Unemployment Insurance Code and the Government Code)
- California Code of Regulations
- Industrial Welfare Commission Wage Orders (detailed orders governing overtime pay)
- California Civil Discovery Law (all discovery subjects)
Want to know what’s going on in Sacramento? Visit this link for information concerning pending employment law information, bills and statutes affecting the workplace, and the activities of the State Senate and Assembly. See what’s happening in the legislature. Reviewing these links will give you a keen understanding of what to expect in the future.
- Official California Legislative Information, including pending bills
- California State Assembly
- California State Senate
- California Legislative Analyst’s Office
There are many important federal laws that govern the workplace. Famously, the Civil Rights Act, the American’s with Disabilities Act, the Equal Pay Act and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act have a huge impact on worker’s rights. These statutes play an important role in defining the modern day workplace. Further, they are the topics of a great deal of news and U.S. Supreme Court decisions.
- Federal Legislation
- Federal Administrative Agencies
- United States Code
- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
- Civil Rights Act of 1991
- Equal Pay Act of 1963
- Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA)
- Title I and V of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990
- Americans With Disabilities Act Document Center
- Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Sections 501 and 505
- National Labor Relations Act
- Railway Labor Act (also covers airline workers)
Almost every bit of information you might ever need about your courts is available for free online at your fingertips. Each Superior Court in California has it’s own website rich with information about the court operations, departments, rulings and cases. Need information about court’s location, hours of service, departments? Find it here. Many courts have a “domain” system that allows you to pull up all pleadings, filings, orders and other information about any case by searching under the last and first name of any party, or the Case Number. Each case is assigned a unique number immediately when the initial pleading is filed with the Court. The websites for the Court of Appeals and the California Supreme Court are also listed here, so you can look up the status of appellate cases by case name or number, and track the progress of the cases. Federal District Court and appeals court websites may be found here as well. You can gain detailed knowledge about the operations of the courts, and the status of pending cases, by visiting these sites.
- California Supreme Court Web Site
- California Court of Appeals Web Site
- California Trial Courts Web Site
- United States District Court, Central District of California
- United States District Court, Eastern District of California
- United States District Court, Southern District of California
- United States District Court, Northern District of California
- Federal District Courts Civil Trials Database
- PACER (Federal Court Docket Sheets, 7 cents per page)
- Directory of Additional Court Web Sites
San Francisco and Bay Area Courthouses
CIVIC CENTER COURTHOUSE
400 McAllister St.
HALL OF JUSTICE
850 Bryant St.
POLK STREET ANNEX
575 Polk St.
Community Justice Center
JUVENILE JUSTICE CENTER
375 Woodside Ave.
These are procedural rules governing case management, filings, motions, pleadings, and other issues for litigating cases.
- California Rules of Court
- California Judicial Council Forms
- California Rules of Professional Conduct
- Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
- Federal Rules of Evidence
Go here to find profiles of judges, read legal newspapers, find interpreters, learn who owns websites, get reverse telephone directories, and find other useful tools you can use in your journey to master employment law.
We hope you find this guide useful. If you would like to recommend additions to this guide, please contact the office.
- Government Printing Office (federal publications and online databases)
- Biographies of All Federal Judges
- Court Interpreters
- Zip Code Lookup
- Telephone Directory (including reverse lookup)
- Librarians’ Index to the Internet
- California Public Employee Relations Publications from University of California
- Lookup Web Site Owners
- Links to U.S. Newspaper Web Sites
- Daily Journal (legal newspaper)
- The Recorder (legal newspaper)
- FindLaw Legal Newsletters