Complaints filed with the DLSE are not public records unless the decision made by the hearing officer is appealed by either party, in which case it will go to court. It then becomes a public record with the court of proper jurisdiction.
They say you get what you pay for, and this response is free, so take it for what it is worth. This is my opinion based on very limited information. My opinion should not be taken as legal advice. For true advice, we would require a confidential consultation where I would ask you questions and get your complete story. This is a public forum, so remember, nothing here is confidential. Nor am I your attorney. I do not know who you are and you have not hired me to provide any legal service. To do so would require us to meet and sign written retainer agreement. My responses are intended for general information only.
No, complaints filed with the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement are not public records. However, appeals of DLSE awards, awards which are confirmed into superior court judgments, and significant Labor Commissioner actions which get media and press coverage do becomes public record.
Frank W. Chen is licensed to practice law in the State of California only. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, consult your own attorney.
In addition to the good answers by attorneys Kirschbaum and Chen, it is likely any interested party can obtain Labor Commissioner records through the California Public Records Act, which is similar to the federal Freedom of Information Act. Of course, the interested party would have to know the record existed before he or she could request it.
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