Jacobs and Dodds is a business/labor law firm with offices in Orange County and Los Angeles County. Each partner has over 35 years of experience. The firm handles employment issues on behalf of employers, business litigation and business transactional matters for over 300 companies.
In Orange County call us at (949) 645-7300. In Los Angeles County call us at (424) 247-1195.
Mediation vs. Arbitration
In a perfect world there would be no
business lawsuits because the parties involved would resolve their differences
without resorting to court action.
At Jacobs & Dodds each of our
lawyers has been trying cases for over 30 years. Last year partner Paul Jacobs
spent over four months in trial. However, before resorting to litigation, every
attempt is made to settle our clients' business disputes before a lawsuit is
filed. There are several alternative dispute resolution methods that can be
effective in resolving business disputes. The two most common are mediation and
Simply put, a mediator seeks to help
parties to develop a shared understanding of the conflict and to work toward
building a practical and lasting resolution. Mediation usually does not take
place in front of a judge (although it can). Mediation typically takes place
before a lawsuit is filed, although mediation can occur during the course of
Several different styles of mediation
exist . Two of the more common forms are evaluative and transformative.
Evaluative mediation has an advisory component
because the mediator evaluates the strengths and weaknesses of each side's
legal position. Transformative mediators do not approach mediation in this
Transformative mediation, in contrast,
looks at conflict as a crisis in communication between two or more parties and
seeks to help resolve the conflict thereby allowing the parties to overcome
their differences. The agreement that arises from this type of mediation occurs
as a natural outcome of the resolution of conflict.
Mediation serves to identify the
disputed issues and to generate options that help the parties reach a
mutually-satisfactory resolution. If a mediation is successful, the settlement
reached is agreed to by all of the parties. This contrasts with litigation,
which normally settles the dispute in favor of the party with the strongest
legal argument. A judge or jury makes the determination, not the parties.
There is some confusion about the
difference between mediation and arbitration. While mediation attempts to
resolve business disputes, primarily by defining the dispute and then working
to find a practical resolution, arbitration involves the appointment of an
arbitrator who listens to the facts concerning the business dispute and then
applies the applicable law and renders a decision (award) that may be binding
or non-binding on the parties.
Employees who primarily work and reside in California cannot be required by employers to enter agreements that would put their claims in a non-California forum or generally litigate claims under law of another jurisdiction. Effective Jan. 1.
What it means: In a legal dispute between employee and employer, what happens in California has to stay in California. The bill forbids adjudication outside of California, including arbitration, for a claim arising in California.
With SB1241, a Texas-based company, for example, can no longer hold a California employee to the noncompetition rule or law in an employment contract that is based on Texas law.
The City of Los Angeles has a mandatory paid
sick leave (PSL) law which is part of its minimum wage ordinance and which
has been in effect since July 1, 2016 for employers with 26 or more
employees. The Los Angeles PSL ordinance will begin to apply to employers
with 25 or fewer employees on July 1, 2017. From an employer perspective, one of the
toughest challenges of these local PSL ordinances is that the rules can change
at any time. That is precisely what happened with Los Angeles’s ordinance when
the city recently revised the rules and regulations relating
to this ordinance. The city also revised its answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ). Some of these changes or clarifications are
important, providing information on topics such as: ·How to determine business size; ·How to pay employees for sick time; ·When an existing paid leave or paid time off
policy can satisfy the requirements of the ordinance; ·How to use the frontloading method during the
first year that the law applies to …
The case of Brown v. American Airlines, Inc., No. CV 10-8431-AG (PJWx), 2015 WL 6735217 (C.D. Cal. Oct. 5, 2015) concerns the dismissal of PAGA claims where the claims are based on numerous individualized issues that may render the case unmanageable.
PAGA allows “aggrieved employees” to bring representative actions against employers for civil penalties on behalf of themselves and other employees for violations of the Labor Code. To recover penalties, a PAGA plaintiff must prove an underlying Labor Code violation as to each allegedly aggrieved employee for each pay period for which the plaintiff seeks penalties. But to determine liability on the underlying Labor Code provisions, the court may need to adjudicate issues specific to each pay period for each allegedly aggrieved employee — which raises potentially significant manageability problems.
A plaintiff may be able to meet the burden of proof where the employee alleges an employer violated Labor Code section 226(a) by providi…