We are still open during this COVID-19 pandemic. Please don't hesitate to contact us at (925) 463-2575 if you have any questions!
Badge - Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers
Badge - ACBA
Badge - The State Bar of California
Badge - AV Preeminent Rating

As the calendar turned from 2020 to 2021, most of California remained under a “stay-at-home” order. For some Bay Area residents, the lifting of lockdown orders may actually exacerbate, rather than reduce, the challenges they face. Many people who were working before the pandemic struck may find themselves forced to remain at home, needing to care for their young children whose daycare remains closed or whose school-aged children remain waiting for their schools to reopen to in-person learning. Be advised that if COVID-19 has forced you to take time away from your job to care for your family, the Fair Employment and Housing Act offers protection against discrimination and/or retaliation related to your taking leave for caretaking activities. If you’ve suffered that kind of harm in your job, you should take immediate action and contact an experienced Oakland employment attorney.

The Families First Act went into effect in April of last year. That law expanded the availability of family and medical leave. Once you return to your job after a period of leave, your employer is forbidden by California law from punishing or taking any kind of adverse employment action against you (like termination, demotion, reduction of hours, reduction of benefits, negative performance assessment, reassignment to a less desirable shift, etc.) because you took that leave.

Say, for example, that you take several weeks of leave to care for your three-year-old child because your child’s previous daycare closed due to COVID-19, and you could not find a new one immediately. Once you returned to work, your coworkers began treating you differently. Three weeks after your return, your supervisor gave you a negative performance review, which you had never before received in your seven years with the company.

Continue reading ›

Many times, when you begin a new job, you are presented with a massive stack of papers to read and sign. The whole thing can seem daunting and it may be tempting simply not to read all the “fine print.” Beware, though. The employment contract you sign may involve forfeiting various rights you have, such as suing in court if you’re later the victim of discrimination or harassment. The good news is that, even if you did sign such an agreement, there may be ways to avoid its enforcement. If you’ve been harmed at work by discrimination or harassment, whatever the details of your employment agreement were, reach out to a knowledgeable Oakland employment attorney to discuss your rights and your options.

S.D. was an example of someone who was able to avoid the hurdle that his arbitration agreement presented. He held a managerial sales position at the maker of a popular energy drink when he was fired in 2018. After that termination, S.D. sued for age discrimination and sex harassment. S.D., who was in his mid 50s when he sued, alleged that he was targeted for termination because of his age and because he had supported women who were sexually harassed by high-ranking males at the company.

The employer asked the court to order both sides to arbitration. The basis for this request was the arbitration agreement S.D. had signed when he began working for the company.

Continue reading ›

Whether you are an inexperienced teen or an adult with decades behind the wheel, having your vehicle break down in the middle of the road is always a stressful experience. Whether your vehicle threw a rod, broke a timing chain or suffered some other catastrophic mechanical failure, your situation is not just frustrating; it is potentially dangerous. If you’ve been hurt because someone else slammed into you and your disabled vehicle, that person may have been negligent and may owe you significant compensation. To find out more, take action promptly to contact a skilled Oakland car accident attorney about your case.

To highlight just how dangerous these situations can be, there’s this extremely sad news report from West Oakland. Sometime after midnight on Nov. 27, a 16-year-old San Pablo boy’s Toyota stalled on I-880, according to the Mercury News. The teen remained with his stranded vehicle, which was in the middle of the freeway.

Before police officers could arrive at the scene, a tractor-trailer slammed into the Toyota, killing the teen, according to the report. The police indicated that officers did not know if the boy, who was thrown from the impact, was sitting inside or standing nearby his car when the crash occurred.

Continue reading ›

Having to endure racial slurs or epithets at work can be an extremely troubling thing, even if the word was used exactly once. In some situations, even just a single use of certain slurs or epithets can be enough to constitute the evidence you need for a successful workplace discrimination lawsuit under the Fair Employment and Housing Act. If that is something you’ve had to deal with at work, a favorable judgment and a substantial award of compensation may be within your reach, so contact an experienced Oakland employment discrimination attorney without delay.

Back in September, the Court of Appeal issued a ruling in an employment discrimination case that, while bad news for the employee who sued, represents potentially very good news for other workers who’ve heard certain slurs at work.

T.B., a Black woman who was an investigative assistant with a Bay Area district attorney’s office, became startled when a mouse ran through the area in which she was working. A coworker mocked her, saying, “you… is so scary.” There was, however, a word between “you” and “is.” That word was that profoundly toxic slur, the “n-word.”

Continue reading ›

As a recent accident in Contra Costa County tragically demonstrated, chain reaction crashes are situations where minor problems can turn deadly in the blink of an eye. If you’ve been hurt – or have lost a loved one – due to one of these crashes, getting the compensation you need is of paramount importance, but proving your case can be particularly tricky. That’s why it is so important to be sure, when it comes time to litigate your chain reaction crash injury case, that you have the legal representation you need from a skilled Oakland car accident attorney.

California is home of three of the biggest chain reaction crashes ever. Two were in Southern California; one was near Fresno. In all three, weather conditions (foggy conditions and one dust storm) were key factors. However, in a lot of chain reaction crashes, including this recent one from Contra Costa County, the cause(s) for the accident relate to human judgments and errors rather than weather conditions.

The recent accident, which occurred near Hercules, was precipitated by a flat tire, CBS San Francisco reported. The driver of a Honda Accord stopped the vehicle in the furthest left travel lane of the freeway. The next driver in the left lane brought their Volkswagen to a stop behind the Accord. A second Honda Accord didn’t stop in time, though, and rear-ended the Volkswagen. The driver of a Honda Civic then rear-ended that second Honda Accord, the report indicated.

Continue reading ›

People with criminal convictions in their past face many challenges as they seek to rebuild their lives and return to participating fully in society. One of the bigger challenges they face is discrimination in the job application process. Fortunately, the State of California enacted the Fair Chance Act in 2018, which significantly restricts what employers can do in terms of asking about your criminal history. If you’ve been removed from an employment applicant pool because of your past conviction, that employer may have broken the law. Contact an experienced Oakland employment attorney to learn more and find out what you can do.

The Fair Chance Act is a kind of “Ban the Box” law. The “box” in question is the one next to a job application question asking you about whether or not you have a criminal history. The Fair Chance Act bans this kind of question, requiring employers to forego seeking applicants’ criminal histories prior to extending a job offer.

Along the way, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) has enacted various regulations that implement the Fair Chance Act, including some that were composed only recently and went into effect October 1, 2020.

Continue reading ›

Bicycle accidents in California are very dangerous and, many times, deadly. On average, roughly three bicyclists died each week in traffic crashes in 2018. If you’ve been hit by a car, truck or van while riding your bicycle, it is essential that you obtain legal representation from a skilled Oakland bicycle accident attorney as soon as possible. The sooner you obtain legal counsel, the sooner your attorney can begin amassing the evidence that may be critical to proving that the person who hit you was also legally liable and that you are entitled to receive compensation.

Crashes where a vehicle – especially a large one like a commercial truck or van – strikes a bicycle can often inflict massive, or even fatal, injuries on the person aboard the bicycle. A 67-year-old Oakland woman’s recent death is yet another tragic example.

The woman was riding her bicycle on Second Avenue near her home in the Eastlake district. As she proceeded southbound, a delivery driver behind the wheel of U-Haul van turned left from East 12th onto Second and into the bicyclist’s path. The van struck the bicyclist, and the local woman was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital, the Mercury News reported.

Continue reading ›

A truck accident that occurred right here in the East Bay recently makes for a grim reminder of just how catastrophically harmful accidents involving semi-trucks can be. It also makes for a potent reminder of how important it is to get the right legal representation if you’ve been hurt in a big rig accident. The right Oakland injury attorney can help you make sure you’re getting everything you should from your injury lawsuit.

In that nearby accident, a Chevrolet Tahoe was traveling westbound on Interstate 580 near Airway Boulevard in Livermore when it and a “truck-tractor combination” collided, according to a Mercury News report. The collision caused the SUV to careen out of control and overturn, which ejected two children, a 12-year-old and an 8-year-old. The 12-year-old boy died, and the 8-year-old child suffered major injuries, the report stated.

Unfortunately, these kinds of accidents are not uncommon here in California. This state logged nearly 28,000 truck accidents that triggered almost 9,700 injuries and more than 350 deaths. This number represents a distinct upward trend, as there were only 296 deaths in 2015 and 259 in 2013.

Continue reading ›

About four years ago, a Fresno-area employment attorney wrote a blog post about a workplace discrimination case in which he gave employers the free advice of “don’t be a jerk.” OK, he didn’t use the work “jerk,” but you can still absorb the author’s main idea. Employers being jerks can do themselves quite a bit of damage. They may cause good employees to leave, good candidates to stay away and, sometimes, they may run afoul of discrimination law, particularly when it comes to creating hostile work environments. When you’ve faced that kind of harm on the job, it is important to reach out to an experienced Oakland employment attorney promptly.

Some employees may face bigger hurdles than others. For example, if you work for an employer that’s a church or church-related entity (such as, for example, a Catholic school,) then you may find that the discrimination you suffered at work may not be something upon which you can sue. That’s because of something called the “ministerial exception.” In fact, a U.S. Supreme Court case that recently ruled against two Catholic school teachers (one fired due to age and one fired due to disability,) made it clear just how broad the ministerial exception is.

Even when the hurdles are high, such as working for a religious employer, it is important to seek out capable legal advice before you decide to abandon your case. Sometimes, the totality of the facts in your case may still provide you with some legal avenue for compensation. For example, a religious employer may be able to demote or fire you because of your disability, age or sex, under the protection of the ministerial exception but, as one recent case illustrates, may be liable if it so humiliated, harassed and belittled you as to create a hostile work environment.

Continue reading ›

Obviously, being a worker with duties that include the supervision and management of others is something that carries certain risks. One of those risks is that underperforming employees may become disgruntled at facing discipline for their deficiencies. One thing that shouldn’t be a risk of your job is being fired due to a false accusation lodged by a disgruntled subordinate. If that happens to you, you may have very good case for wrongful termination and the opportunity to recover very substantial amounts of compensation, so be sure to act promptly in retaining an experienced Oakland employment attorney.

The case of a bank vice president, and the multi-million dollar award he received, is a good illustration of what you can do… and how you can win. The employee, T.K., was a Sacramento-area senior vice president for a major national bank. In 2012, T.K. informed K.T., one of his subordinates, that he intended to place her on a “performance improvement plan,” which is a type of employment discipline against a worker with job-performance deficiencies.

Shortly after the vice president made the comment, K.T. complained to human resources about T.K.’s supposed gender discrimination and harassment. Less than two months later, the bank, having completed its investigation, fired T.K.

Continue reading ›

Contact Information