New Fair Employment and Housing Act Regulations Expand Obligations of California Employers
On April 1, 2016, California employers subject to the Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”) will be required to comply with a plethora of amendments to the FEHA that were recently adopted by the California Fair Employment and Housing Council (“FEHC”). Many of the amendments are targeted at increasing employers’ responsibilities with respect to preventing unlawful harassment, discrimination and retaliation from occurring. Several other amendments make the regulations consistent with recent statutory changes and case law, such as outlining the burden of proof in FEHA discrimination and retaliation cases, clarifying that sexual harassment does not need to be motivated by sexual desire, and prohibiting harassment of independent contractors, unpaid interns and volunteers. While we will not summarize all of the changes in this Alert, the more significant amendments are discussed below. The full text of the regulations may be found here.