Thank you, Fresno!
Earlier this month LAAC held our annual
Traveling Training conference
in Fresno, California.
Traveling Training brings the training rural programs need right to their own city and introduces advocates to a range of Support Center expertise, with trainers from throughout California presenting workshops on diverse substantive issues, skills, and hot topics.
This year we had
12 sessions presented by
21 advocates from
13 organizations. A very special thank you to our presenters who all traveled from different parts of California to participate in these trainings!
LAAC Needs Your Help this Holiday Season
LAAC is dedicated to ensuring that people in legal crisis have access to legal help and information. To do this, LAAC provides training, legislative advocacy, support, including discounts on critical services, and
a free legal resource for low income and pro se litigants.
By supporting LAAC, you help us strengthen the whole California legal aid community.
Don't wait until January to fulfill your required CLE - we have tons of FREE upcoming webinars!
We regularly update our website with more trainings, please be sure to check out our "
" page, or find a past webinar under "
." If you are interested in putting on a webinar training through LAAC or have any trainings questions, please contact Jasmine at JSchwabDoyle@laaconline.org.
Take advantage of LAAC's on-demand CLE credits!
MCLE reporting is coming up: don't forget to t
ake advantage of LAAC's on-demand credits!
The State Bar allows up to HALF of your MCLE to come from self-study -
12.5 hours that you can earn on your own time. We have over 100 hours available on-demand on our site - and it's easy to search by topic or organization in the search bar.
Reminder: When minimum wage increases next year, the standard for exempt employees changes with it.
Will you be in compliance with overtime pay rules?
As you know, employees that are "exempt" do not qualify for overtime pay.
But are you using the correct test to determine which of your employees are exempt? With variation between the California and Federal Rules, a rollback of Obama-era changes, and the increasing minimum wage, it can get. . . tricky. Especially for smaller organizations without a dedicated HR department.
Here's what you need to know:
- Professional" employees are exempt from overtime pay laws.
- The definition of a professional employee is linked to the minimum wage. So when the minimum wage changes, don't forget that it may change which of your employees qualify! Minimum wage is about to go up - your lower-paid exempt employees will need to be paid above a higher threshold to remain exempt.
- A professional employee meets these requirements:
- A person who is:
- Licensed by the State of California and primarily engaged in: law, medicine, dentistry, optometry, architecture, engineering, teaching, or accounting; OR
- Primarily engaged in a "learned or artistic profession"
- Customarily and regularly exercised discretion and independent judgment in the performance of their duties
- Earns a monthly salary equivalent to no less than two times the state minimum wage for full-time employment (40 hours/week)
- This will likely include all of the attorneys working in your office. And case law suggests it will include fellows awaiting bar results too. See, e.g. Zelasko-Barrett v. Brayton-Purcell, LLP, 2011 WL 3594015, No. A130540 (1st Dist. Aug. 17, 2011).
- See the full definition of professional employees here.
- California law says that the threshold is twice minimum wage.
- In 2017, that means, at a minimum wage of $10.50 (for employers with 26 or more employees), the salary threshold is $43,680; or $10 (for employers with 25 employees or less), the threshold is $41,600.
- On January 1, 2018, minimum wage will go up to $11.00 and $10.50, so the new threshold hold is $45,760 (26+ employees) or $43,680 (<26 employees).
- You can keep track of California minimum wage increases here.
- What's different under Trump?
- Under the Obama administration, the definition of exempt employees changed, but shortly after the election, the change was blocked right before the new rules were to take effect.
- Under what would have been the new rules, the salary threshold below which an employee must be classified as NON-exempt increased from $23,660 to $47,476.
- We don't know if or when any changes will be made under the Trump Administration.
- Note that, at least for now, California's requirements are more restrictive than federal law, making the federal standards largely irrelevant in this context.