Photo of Melanie Chaney

Melanie Chaney is an experienced negotiator and litigator who regularly advises cities, counties, community college districts, school districts, public safety departments and special districts regarding employee and labor relations matters. She negotiates, drafts and provides guidance for interpreting collective bargaining agreements. She also handles all aspects of labor disputes including unfair labor practice charges before the California Public Employment Relations Board (PERB). As a litigator, Melanie has received favorable verdicts in state and federal court before judges and juries. She also handles arbitrations and administrative proceedings including disciplinary actions and grievances.

Happy HolidaysIt is that time of the year again… the holiday season.  Time to celebrate!  Many employers throw festive holiday or year-end parties complete with food, alcohol and entertainment.  According to a Society of Human Resource Management Survey on Holiday/Year End Activities, in recent years about two-thirds of organizations have held holiday parties for their employees. 

Employment-Application.pngThe National Football League’s handling of several recent high-profile domestic violence incidents involving players Ray Rice, Greg Hardy and Jonathan Dwyer has raised the national consciousness regarding how employers handle domestic violence issues. Domestic violence has been, and continues to be, a prevalent problem that creates many challenging issues for employers.  A recent Centers for


The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently ruled that Northwestern University football players who receive grant-in-aid scholarships and have not exhausted their playing eligibility are “employees” under the National Labor Relations Act, and therefore have the right unionize and engage in collective bargaining with their “employer.”  (Northwestern University v. College Athletes Players Association (CAPA)

Men-in-Wheelchair.jpgUnder the ADA and FEHA, the employer has the duty to identify and implement a reasonable accommodation to allow a disabled employee to perform the essential functions of the job. Common pitfalls for employers in determining appropriate accommodations are:

1.     Over-reliance on the written job description

Job descriptions are critical in the disability interactive process