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LA Mag Sued by Former Executive Editor for Lost Wages, Violation of California Labor Law

In a lawsuit filed Jan. 27, the former Los Angeles Magazine editor accused the publication of multiple violations of California labor law, including nonpayment of wages and overtime, misclassification as as a contractor and failure to itemize wage statements.

Joseph Kapsch, who is now a contributor to TheWrap, worked for LA Magazine as an editor from October 2021 to June 2022. He says he was wrongly classified as an entrepreneur, claiming LA Magazine violated the so-called “ABC” test by doing this.

The “ABC Test” establishes three criteria that must be met for an employee to be considered a contractor rather than a full employee: fact”; “The individual is performing work that is outside the business of the hiring entity”; and ” The person regularly performs work in an independently established trade, profession or business that is the same as the work requested and performed.”

In his filing, Kapsch claims he met none of these conditions, saying LA Magazine asserted “extensive and pervasive control over the conduct, means and manner of work, actions, wages and hours of plaintiffs.” , that his duties as editor were “necessary” for the operation and publication of the magazine, and that he was not engaged in any work independently established for them.

As such, according to the lawsuit, Kapsch was legally a non-exempt employee and that he was unlawfully denied overtime pay and clearly detailed wages. Additionally, Kapsch claims that he did not receive all of the money owed to him upon the termination of his employment with LA Magazine, a violation of California law which states that all such wages must be paid immediately, or that the employer must pay an additional 30 days of wages as a penalty.

Kapsch is seeking compensatory damages, legal penalties, and legal expense coverage for lost wages and overtime; actual damages, legal costs, legal penalties and legally prescribed penalties for misclassification; and legal fees, compensatory damages, and statutory damages for failing to itemize his salary.

Representatives for Los Angeles Magazine did not immediately respond to a request for comment from TheWrap.

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