New Law: Professional Cheerleaders in California Are Now Employees

A new bill signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown requires that cheerleaders working for professional football and basketball be classified as employees and be paid at least minimum wage.

AB 202 is a new and pioneering law of its kind and follows a number of lawsuits filed by cheerleaders against professional sports teams. One such lawsuit, filed by “Lacy T.” against the Oakland Raiders accused the professional football team of withholding pay until the end of the sports season, not paying the cheerleaders for all hours worked, and not reimbursing them for many business expenses. According to the lawsuit, each Oakland Raiders cheerleader was paid $1,250 for working a full season, which added up to less than $5 per hour for the time that the cheerleaders spent rehearsing, performing, and appearing at events. The suit also alleges that cheerleaders were not paid until the end of the football season. Another lawsuit, brought against the Buffalo Bills, alleged that their cheerleaders worked hundreds of hours, but received as little as $105 in pay per year.

We cheer the passage of AB 202. Workplace violations are a serious matter. See our blogs for more information. If you believe your employer has been violating your rights in the workplace, contact the experienced attorneys at Stephen Danz & Associates for a free consultation.