Calif. governor signs bill adding social workers to provider networks

California workers compensation insurers and self-insured employers can add licensed clinical social workers to their medical provider networks, under a bill signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Tuesday. S.B. 1002 authorizes “qualified licensed clinical social workers to assess, evaluate and treat the behavioral and mental health needs of injured workers within the workers compensation system, … Read more

Calif. employers must provide more detailed information on employee pay

California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law a bill on Tuesday that requires employers to provide more detailed information on their employees’ pay. While private employers with 100 or more employees are already required to file an Employer Information Report with the federal government, the new law, which takes effect next year, requires employers to … Read more

Tesla countersues Calif. agency behind race bias suit

(Reuters) — Tesla Inc. on Thursday countersued the California agency that has accused the electric carmaker of tolerating widespread race discrimination at its flagship assembly plant. Tesla in a complaint filed in state court in Alameda County said the California Civil Rights Department, which sued the company in February, adopted “underground regulations” allowing it to file the lawsuit without first notifying Tesla of the claims or giving the company a chance to settle. … Read more

Amplify Energy to pay $5M to settle criminal charges over Calif. oil spill

(Reuters) — California officials on Thursday said Amplify Energy Corp. agreed to plead no contest to six criminal charges and pay nearly $5 million in penalties and fines in connection with a crude oil spill last year that killed birds and fouled beaches. The announcement was the latest legal effort to hold the Texas-based oil … Read more

Calif. Emission-Free Mandate Presents New Risks for Auto Insurers

A state mandate in California that will require all cars sold after 2035 to be emission free presents a formidable challenge for auto insurers to properly price and fully understand the risks presented by electric vehicles. The rule adopted by the California Air Resources Board comes as average collision repair wait times are lengthening and … Read more

Beauty products retailer to pay $1.2M to settle Calif. privacy charges

Beauty products retailer Sephora Inc. will pay $1.2 million to settle charges it violated the California Consumer Privacy Act, the California attorney general’s office said Wednesday. California AG Rob Bonta said in a statement that Sephora, whose U.S. headquarters is in San Francisco, failed to disclose to consumers it was selling their personal information and … Read more

Calif. Senate passes lifeguard skin cancer presumption, insurance fraud bill

The California Senate on Tuesday unanimously passed a bill that would expand the presumption that skin cancer is work-related for peace officers with the state departments of Fish and Wildlife and Parks and Recreation. A.B. 334, which was sent to the governor, is a carry-over bill from 2021 that would create a presumption that skin cancer … Read more

Calif. lawmakers pass PTSD expansion, contractor cover bills

The California Assembly on Tuesday unanimously approved a bill that would expand the types of first responders eligible for the presumption that post-traumatic stress disorder is work-related, while the Senate unanimously concurred in amendments to a bill that would require comp coverage for certain contractors. S.B. 284, a carry-over bill from 2021 that spent most … Read more

PTSD, contractor cover and fraud among Calif. bills

A bill that would give more workers a presumption that post-traumatic stress disorder is job-related is up for a third and final vote in the California Assembly after spending the last year on the lower chamber’s “inactive file.” S.B. 284, which was ordered for a third reading on Thursday, would expand the PTSD presumption to … Read more

Calif. Appellate Court Refuses to Expand Trigger for Independent Counsel

Under California Civil Code §2860, insureds have a right to obtain independent counsel at the insurer’s expense whenever there are competing interests that create an ethical conflict for the insurer-appointed counsel. Since enactment, the California courts defined the boundaries of §2860. As an example, the California courts have held that not every reservation of rights … Read more