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Hanson Bridgett LLP | November 2017

The revised Phase 2 Requirements of Participation for long-term care facilities will go into effect November 28, 2017. While multiple provider groups have requested a delay of some of the rule's provisions to allow time for additional revisions, officials at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services ("CMS") have indicated that they will not act on those requests at this time and plan to move forward with the November 28, 2017, implementation date for Phase 2 ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | November 2017

IRS Announcement 2017-15 provides relief to employees who have been adversely affected by the recent wildfires in Northern California by allowing them to take loans or distributions from retirement plans to alleviate hardships caused by the wildfires. The Announcement also provides relief from verification procedures required under retirement plans with respect to loans and hardship distributions ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | November 2017

The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) announced on November 9, 2017 that it was adding two widely used perfluorinated chemicals to the Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to cause reproductive toxicity: perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | November 2017

On October 13, 2017, Governor Brown signed SB 798, amending Business and Professions Code Section 805, Civil Code Sections 43.7 and 43.8, and Evidence Code Section 1157 to include licensed midwives within their scope. Notably, these changes only apply to licensed midwives, those professionals who pass the North American Registry of Midwives examination and are licensed by the Medical Board of California ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | November 2017

In M.F. v. Pacific Pearl Hotel Management LLC, Case No. D070150 (October 26, 2017), the California Court of Appeal revived a case in which an employee, who had been raped by a trespasser on the employer's premises, sued her employer under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) for sexual harassment by a non-employee and for failure to prevent such harassment. The court concluded that the allegations overcame the workers' compensation exclusivity doctrine ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | November 2017

On November 2, 2017, the State Water Resources Control Board ("State Water Board") published a notice of a proposed water conservation regulation that would permanently prohibit individuals, businesses, and cities, among others, from engaging in certain "wasteful" water practices. The regulation would be part of a new chapter in the California Code of Regulations entitled "Conservation and the Prevention of Waste and Unreasonable Use." See Cal. Code Regs. tit ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | November 2017

Last week, the House Republicans unveiled their highly anticipated plan for tax reform. Although clients should not rush into planning based on the House plan, it is important to be aware of potential changes in the tax code. In particular, business owners and individual high net worth clients should be prepared for the adverse and beneficial aspects of the proposed plan because the plan is intended to be effective for tax years beginning January 1, 2018 ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | October 2017

Key employment bills were signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown at the close of the 2016-2017 legislative session. The bills take effect January 1, 2018, unless noted otherwise. Here’s what you need to know: Ban the Box (AB 1008): AB 1008 follows the “ban the box” regulations promulgated in July 2017 and creates new state-wide restrictions on the use of criminal history in hiring decisions under the California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | October 2017

On October 19, 2017, the IRS announced in Notice 2017-64 cost of living adjustments to the qualified plan dollar limits for 2018. Some of these limits did not change from 2017 because the increase in the cost of living index did not meet the statutory thresholds that trigger an adjustment. Below is a summary of the limits that are generally relevant for most retirement plans ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | October 2017

At the end of the 2017 Legislative Session, California Governor Jerry Brown signed two new laws that will impact employers' hiring processes as of January 1, 2018.[1] To start, AB 1008 repeals the "ban the box" requirement in the California Labor Code, which currently applies only to public employers, and replaces it with an amendment to the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, which will apply to both public and private employers ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | October 2017

If your estate plan was put in place more than 3 years ago, the plan is likely designed to save estate taxes at the sacrifice of income tax benefits. Estate tax is no longer a concern for married couples owning less than $11 million of assets. We recommend reviewing your estate plan to confirm that it has the flexibility to adapt to tax law changes and to secure income tax benefits ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | October 2017

I lost my home in the 1991 Oakland Firestorm. As such, my heart goes out to the residents of Napa, Mendocino and Sonoma counties whose homes were damaged or destroyed, to the firefighters and first responders who have risked and are risking their lives, as well as to the community, which will also experience the aftermath of such devastating fires ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | September 2017

The Origin & Cause In 2010, a California jury returned a $671 million verdict in a class action alleging "violation of the rights of residents" under the California Health and Safety Code[1] arising from alleged understaffing at senior care facilities.  Before the jury determined whether to award punitive damages, the Lavender, et. al. v.Skilled Healthcare Group, Inc.[2]lawsuit settled ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | September 2017

The Origin & Cause In 2010, a California jury returned a $671 million verdict in a class action alleging "violation of the rights of residents" under the California Health and Safety Code[1] arising from alleged understaffing at senior care facilities.  Before the jury determined whether to award punitive damages, the Lavender, et. al. v.Skilled Healthcare Group, Inc.[2]lawsuit settled ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | September 2017

Benefit corporation legislation created a new kind of corporation that is required to pursue a social and environmental mission in addition to creating economic benefits for its shareholders. California pioneered the model benefit corporation legislation with its passage in 2011, and Delaware passed its own form of benefit corporation legislation in 2013 ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | September 2017

  On August 28, 2017, the California Supreme Court issued a 5-2 split decision in California Cannabis Coalition v. City of Upland, S234148. The Court held that a revenue measure proposed by citizen initiative is not “imposed by local government," and does not trigger the procedural limitations of Article XIII C of the California Constitution,[1] as a result ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | August 2017

California defamation law continues to evolve as the courts synthesize well-settled legal principles with ever-changing technological realities. On July 21, 2017, California’s First District Court of Appeal issued a published opinion in ZL Technologies v. Does 1-7 (July 21, 2017) 2017 DJ DAR 6999 ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | August 2017

Medical Cannabis approvals in the City have been the subject of intense negotiations, hearings, and appeals in the last two months. First, our law firm assisted the Apothecarium - Sunset (an additional location in the Sunset District for the medical cannabis dispensary called The Apothecarium currently near the Castro), in obtaining an approval at the Planning Commission ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | July 2017

We previously reported on recent efforts to rescind the Obama Administration’s rule amending the Clean Water Act’s “waters of the United States” (“WOTUS”) definition. This followed, as we also reported, the Sixth Circuit’s nationwide stay of the Obama Administration’s WOTUS rule ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | July 2017

On July 18, the Board of Supervisors passed a new law that changes the affordable housing requirements relating to the construction of market rate units. The new law affects new market rate housing developments of 25 or more dwellings units and expands the amount of affordable housing that will be oriented toward the middle income wage earner ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | July 2017

On January 1, 2019, local agencies will be required to comply with new requirements for posting agendas on their websites (AB 2257). The California Brown Act requires that any local agency must post an agenda 72 hours in advance of a regular meeting. If an agency has a website, then the agency is required to post the agenda on their website ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | July 2017

A number of local California cities and counties have passed their own minimum wage ordinances with a more aggressive schedule of minimum wage increases. While some cities and counties already implemented incremental increases in January, others increased on July 1, 2017, as follows: Locality Minimum Wage Eff. 7/1/17 Emeryville $15.20 (56 or more employees) $14 ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | June 2017

Prior to imposing, extending, or increasing any tax, a public agency must submit the tax to a vote of the electorate. However, public agencies need no such approval to impose certain types of fees. In Jacks v. City of Santa Barbara, the Supreme Court considered whether and when municipal franchise fees—fees charged to utilities and others for the use of public rights of way—constitute taxes requiring voter approval ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | June 2017

On June 27, 2017, the US EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers took the first of two steps to narrow the Clean Water Act’s scope. The agencies proposed a rule rescinding the Obama Administration’s 2015 Clean Water Rule defining “waters of the United States” (“WOTUS”) and replacing it with its prior definition ...

Hanson Bridgett LLP | June 2017

In November of 2016, San Francisco residents voted to pass a new law ("Proposition E"), effective July 1, 2017, that transfers back responsibility from private property owners to the City of San Francisco to maintain and care for street trees and surrounding sidewalks damaged by the trees. The City had taken care of trees several decades ago, but then shifted responsibility back to property owners after that (during a time of budget crisis) ...

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