Skip to main content

If I file a complaint with the Labor Commissioner, will it become public?

San Francisco, CA |

Could future employers find out about it?

+ Read More

Filed under: Employment Appeals
Attorney answers 3


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.

*** All legal actions have time limits, called statutes of limitation. If you miss the deadline for filing your claim, you will lose the opportunity to pursue your case. Please consult with an experienced employment attorney as soon as possible to better preserve your rights. *** Marilynn Mika Spencer provides information on Avvo as a service to the public, primarily when general information may be of assistance. Avvo is not an appropriate forum for an in-depth response or a detailed analysis. These comments are for information only and should not be considered legal advice. Legal advice must pertain to specific, detailed facts. No attorney-client relationship is created based on this information exchange. *** Marilynn Mika Spencer is licensed to practice law before all state and federal courts in California, and can appear before administrative agencies throughout the country. She is eligible to represent clients in other states on a pro hac vice basis. ***