Fees Can Be Awarded Under Labor Code section 98.2(c).
An employer is entitled to an award of reasonable attorney’s fees, in an amount to be determined by the trial court, when an employee unsuccessfully appeals from a Labor Commissioner’s ruling to the trial court. (Lab. Code sec. 98.2(c).) Cooper v. Golden Gate Reporters, LLC, Case No. A122156 (1st Dist., Div. 4 June 26, 2009) (unpublished) involved application of this provision, where a trial court awarded winning employer $10,000 out of a requested $16,000 in fees. The award was affirmed under the deferential abuse of discretion standard.
BLOG UNDERVIEW—The Court of Appeal actually helped employee out upfront. She appealed from a minute order awarding fees, not the later signed judgment. However, the appellate court liberally construed the notice of appeal to encompass the later order—a determination that has or has not been endorsed by other courts depending on the circumstances.