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Los Angeles County, California, Enacts Fair Chance Act

04 Apr

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Update Applicable to:Effective date
All employers located or doing business in unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County with 5 or more employees regardless of locationSeptember 3. 2024


What happened?

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors passed an ordinance adding several compliance requirements to the California Fair Chance Act (The Ordinance) requirements for employers well beyond existing federal and state law, which extends to contractor and freelance workers.


What are the details?

The Ordinance establishes new burdens to the already complex situations employers face. Below is a breakdown that, although not comprehensive, illustrates the main burdens employers must face.


Key bites:

  • Coverage: the Ordinance defines employment broadly, covering employees (the job involves performing work on average at least 2 hours each week within the unincorporated areas of the County) and contract work (contractors).
  • Mandatory Posting Requirements for job postings and like materials:
  • Employers must post notice of the ordinance at every workplace and on webpages frequently visited by their employees or applicants.

A copy to the union must be provided If unionized.

  • A form of notice will be made available by the County of Los Angeles Department of Consumer and Business Affairs (DCBA).
  • The postings and like materials can not include any language that may deter applicants from applying (i.e. no felons, no arrests, etc.), and employers that condition job offers on a criminal background check must include in all materials, a list of all the material job duties of the position for which the employer “reasonably believes” criminal history may have an adverse effect, potentially resulting in the withdrawal of the conditional job offer
  • Recordkeeping: employers must retain all records for 4 years.
  • Unlawful practices: Employers cannot ask about an individual’s criminal history before making a job offer, including Labor Code section 432.7 (which governs records of arrest, including pending charges) and Labor Code section 432.8 (which pertains to certain marijuana-related convictions). They can only inquire about the past seven years, with some exceptions for specific roles; even questions about non-criminal infractions are banned, with some exceptions for specific roles (i.e.: driving-related infractions if the job requires driving).
  • Preliminary Notice and Notice of Adverse Action: a procedure has been created for employers to conduct a background check (unless legally required to do so, i.e., law enforcement), detailing the content, period, and other requirements like notices.


For additional information and breakdown, check here and here.

  • Penalties: The county’s Department of Consumer and Business Affairs investigates and issues $5K, $10K, and $20K penalties for each progressive violation of these requirements, and private civil litigation is expressly authorized.


Business Considerations

  • Create and update your policies, practices, and procedures to add and comply with the new requirements regarding onboarding and termination, including online resources.
  • Update all job offers, posters, and job-like materials (like job templates, and notices) to comply with the new requirements.
  • Train your HR personnel regarding the new limitations for interviews questions.
  • Review the hiring and screening process to ensure compliance, including the timing of background checks, the distribution of mandatory notices, and the application of mandatory deferral periods.
  • If you use a vendor, confirm that their services in this regard will be compliant.


Resources


Source References

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This communication is intended solely for the purpose of conveying information. The present post might incorporate hyperlinks directing readers to websites managed by third-party entities. The inclusion of any links within this communication is meant to serve as points of reference and could encompass opinion articles from various law firms, articles from HR associations, official websites, news releases, and documents of government agencies, and other relevant third-party sources. Vensure has no authority over these external websites and bears no responsibility for their content. Furthermore, Vensure does not endorse the materials present on these websites. The contents of this communication should not be interpreted as legal advice or as a legal standpoint concerning specific facts or scenarios. Nor should it be deemed an exhaustive compilation of facts potentially pertinent to federal, state, or local laws. It is strongly advised that employers solicit legal guidance from an employment attorney when undertaking actions in response to any legal updates provided. This is due to the possibility of future alterations occurring in federal, state, and local laws, regulations, as well as the directives and guidelines issued by governing agencies. These changes may transpire at any given time, potentially rendering certain portions of the content within this update void or inaccurate.

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