California Employment Law Update

Category Archives: Class Actions

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November 2023 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted November 2023 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Company That Hired Competitor’s Employee Was Not Entitled To Arbitrate Claims Disability Discrimination Claim Was Properly Dismissed On Summary Judgment Employee’s Attorney’s “Pervasive Incivility” Justified … Continue Reading

The Case for a PAGA Adequacy Requirement

In Arias v. Superior Court, 46 Cal. 4th 969 (2009), the California Supreme Court ruled that Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) actions need not satisfy class action requirements, and in the fourteen years since, PAGA plaintiffs have routinely (and often successfully) resisted attempts to apply class action principles to PAGA actions.  A recent unpublished California … Continue Reading

Nurse May Proceed With Class Certification On Wage Statement Claim

Woodworth v. Loma Linda Univ. Med. Ctr., 93 Cal. App. 5th 1038 (2023) Nicole Woodworth was a registered nurse at Loma Linda University Medical Center from December 2011 to June 2014.  In June 2014, she filed a putative class action against Loma Linda, alleging various wage and hour claims on behalf of herself and other … Continue Reading

Business Entity Agents Of Employer Share Potential FEHA Liability

Raines v. U.S. Healthworks Med. Group, 2023 WL 5341067 (Cal. S. Ct. 2023) The Ninth Circuit certified to the California Supreme Court the question of whether FEHA’s definition of “employer” extends to corporate agents of the employer such as a company that conducts preemployment medical screenings.  In this putative class action, plaintiffs allege that their … Continue Reading

PAGA Plaintiffs May Maintain Representative Claims In Court After Individual Claims Are Compelled To Arbitration

Adolph v. Uber Techs., Inc., 14 Cal. 5th 1104 (2023) After months of anticipation, the California Supreme Court answered “yes” to the critical question of whether “aggrieved” PAGA plaintiffs retain their standing to pursue representative claims in court after their individual claims have been compelled to arbitration. Erik Adolph worked as a driver for Uber, … Continue Reading

July 2023 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted July 2023 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Enforcement of PAGA Carve Out Suggests Need For New Revisions To Arbitration Agreements PAGA Debt Not Dischargeable in Bankruptcy Distributors Not Liable For Unpaid Wages Of … Continue Reading

No Implied Waiver Of Disqualification Of Judge For Bias Or Appearance Of Impartiality After One Year

North Am. Title Co. v. Superior Court, 91 Cal. App. 5th 948 (2023) During oral argument on a motion, the trial judge accused the employer-defendants of participating in a “name change shell game,” a “corporate game of three-card monte” and “trickery” and “scheming” to evade payment of a $43.5 million judgment to plaintiffs in this wage-and-hour … Continue Reading

Good News for Employers: Good Faith Belief of Compliance Precludes Both Final Wage and Wage Statement Penalties

Last summer, we reported here the California Supreme Court ruling that premium payments owed under Labor Code section 226.7 for meal and rest break violations constitute “wages.” The Naranjo et al. v. Spectrum Sec. Servs., Inc., 13 Cal. 5th 93, 102 (2022) decision had significant ramifications because it triggered related obligations for employers to report … Continue Reading

November 2022 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted November 2022 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Equal Pay Act Claim Should Not Have Been Dismissed Whistleblower Claim Should Not Have Been Dismissed In Part School District Employee May Have Been Discriminated … Continue Reading

California Court of Appeal Dismantles Rounding Where Accurate Timekeeping Records Exist

A decade ago, a California Court of Appeal held that employers lawfully could round employees’ time punches if the rounding policy was neutral on its face and as applied. See See’s Candy Shops, Inc. v. Super. Ct., 210 Cal. App. 4th 889 (2012). In arriving at this conclusion, the See’s Court relied on regulations under … Continue Reading

July 2022 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted July 2022 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Summary Judgment Was Properly Granted To Employer In Whistleblower Case Job Applicants Need Not Be Paid For Time/Expenses Associated With Drug Testing Employer May Have … Continue Reading

Employer May Have Willfully Violated FCRA By Not Providing Employees Proper Background Check Notice

Hebert v. Barnes & Noble, Inc., 78 Cal. App. 5th 791 (2022) The federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”) requires an employer to provide a job applicant with a standalone disclosure stating that the employer may obtain the applicant’s consumer report when making a hiring decision. In this putative class action, Vicki Hebert alleged that … Continue Reading

Job Applicants Need Not Be Paid For Time/Expenses Associated With Drug Testing

Johnson v. WinCo Foods, LLC, 2022 WL 2112792 (9th Cir. 2022) Alfred Johnson brought this class action against WinCo, seeking compensation as an “employee” for the time and expense of taking a drug test as a successful applicant for employment. Plaintiffs argued that because the drug tests were administered under the control of the employer, … Continue Reading

Employer Need Not Reimburse Travel Expenses for Drug Test

A federal appeals court recently affirmed a summary judgment entered in favor of WinCo Foods in a class action alleging that WinCo should have reimbursed successful job applicants for the time and travel expenses they incurred in obtaining a drug test as a pre-condition of employment.  In Johnson v. WinCo Foods, LLC, the court agreed … Continue Reading

May 2022 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted May 2022 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Former UCLA Physician Can Proceed With Whistleblower Claims Former Employee Adequately Alleged Disability Under The ADA California Resident May Rely Upon Labor Code § 925 … Continue Reading

Court Improperly Remanded Action To State Court Based On Amount In Controversy Under CAFA

Jauregui v. Roadrunner Transp. Servs., Inc., 28 F.4th 989 (9th Cir. 2022) Griselda Jauregui filed this putative class action in California state court against Roadrunner Transportation Services on behalf of all current and former hourly workers in California. The complaint alleged numerous violations of California wage and hour law. Roadrunner removed the case to federal … Continue Reading

Trial Court Should Not Have Dismissed PAGA Claims On Unmanageability Grounds

Estrada v. Royalty Carpet Mills, Inc., 76 Cal. App. 5th 685 (2022) In this PAGA case, the trial court relied upon Wesson v. Staples the Office Superstore, LLC, 68 Cal. App. 5th 746 (2021) in which the Court of Appeal held that trial courts have inherent authority to strike unmanageable PAGA claims. The Court of … Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Rules Meal and Rest Break Premiums Constitute “Wages” Potentially Triggering Penalties for Violations

In a much anticipated ruling, on May 23, 2022, the California Supreme Court issued its decision in Naranjo et al. v. Spectrum Security Services, Inc.  Previously, the Court of Appeal held that unpaid premium payments for meal period violations did not entitle employees to additional penalties for either inaccurate wage statements or failure to timely … Continue Reading

Spring Showers Bring Job Killer Bills to California

Pablo Neruda once said “you can cut all the flowers but you cannot keep spring from coming.”  Likewise, California businesses’ protests against oppressive employment legislation don’t seem to stem the tide of the Legislature’s latest batch of anti-employer bills. The California Chamber of Commerce has just identified a host of recently introduced “Job Killer” Bills … Continue Reading

Gone Surfing: Could California Be the First State to Adopt a Four-Day Workweek?

In recent years, countries such as Iceland and Belgium and some domestic companies have experimented with the concept of four-day workweeks.  Now, a new bill proposed by California Assemblymembers Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) and Evan Low (D-San Jose), Assembly Bill 2932 (“AB 2932”), proposes to make a four-day workweek the new normal in California for … Continue Reading

March 2022 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted March 2022 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: California Relaxes Standard For Proving Whistleblower Claims At-Will Employee Can Proceed With Labor Code § 970 Claim Doctor Proved Age/Race/Gender Discrimination Former Owner of Company Is … Continue Reading

Court Properly Denied Class Certification For Wage Hour Claims Involving Rounding

Cirrincione v. American Scissor Lift, Inc., 73 Cal. App. 5th 619 (2022) Jason Cirrincione filed a putative class action lawsuit against his former employer for various wage and hour violations, including failure to pay overtime and minimum wages, meal and rest breaks, waiting time penalties, Cal. Labor Code § 2802, etc. These claims were predicated … Continue Reading

Heightened Standard Of Fairness Required For Approval Of Class Action Settlement

Peck v. Swift Transp. Co. of Ariz., 2022 WL 414692 (9th Cir. 2022) In evaluating a settlement of a class action involving Cal. Labor Code § 2802 (employer indemnity for employee expenses), the district court stated that “the parties engaged in arm’s-length, serious, informed and non-collusive negotiations between experienced and knowledgeable counsel … after mediation … Continue Reading
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