California Employment Law Update

Category Archives: Meal Periods and Rest Breaks

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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

Employee’s Meal and Rest Break PAGA Claims Survive Summary Judgment

Arce v. Ensign Grp., Inc., 96 Cal. App. 5th 622 (2023) Cecilia Arce worked as a certified nursing assistant at a skilled nursing facility. After her employer terminated her, she brought claims under the Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”) that she worked through meal and rest periods and was not paid premiums she was owed … Continue Reading

Employers Face New Accommodation Requirements For Nursing Mothers

In our recent blog post, we highlighted legislation that will impact employers this year related to nursing and pregnant employees: the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers Act (the “PUMP Act”) and the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (the “PWFA”).  As this legislation becomes effective—with the PUMP Act taking effect on April 28, 2023 and … Continue Reading

March 2023 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted March 2023 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: No Claim By Employee Who Was Friends With Alleged Harasser Pregnancy Discrimination Lawsuit Was Properly Dismissed Employer That Failed To Layoff Employee Before She Became … Continue Reading

Good Faith Is Defense To Labor Code’s “Knowing And Intentional” Standard

Naranjo v. Spectrum Sec. Servs., Inc., 2023 WL 2261253 (Cal. Ct. App. 2023) After holding that premium payments from meal and rest period violations under Labor Code section 226.7 constituted “wages,” the California Supreme Court remanded to the Court of Appeal to resolve two questions: First, whether in failing to timely pay employees premium pay, … 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

January 2023 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted January 2023 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Age/National Origin Case Was Properly Dismissed Despite “Direct Evidence” Of Discriminatory Animus Family Court May Order Employer To Provide Determination Of Arrearages Owed In Spousal … Continue Reading

Outside Salesperson Exemption Does Not Apply To Workers Whose Employer Controls Their Hours And Working Conditions

Espinoza v. Warehouse Demo Servs., Inc., 86 Cal. App. 5th 1184 (2022) Georgina Espinoza, an employee of Warehouse Demo Services (“Warehouse”), worked in a Costco and performed demonstrations of products. Warehouse did not lease the space, but instead collects floor space on behalf of the companies whose products are demonstrated and then remits payment on … Continue Reading

Congress Adds Additional Protections for Pregnant Workers

In the recent $1.7 trillion Omnibus Spending Bill passed by Congress and signed into law by President Biden, two measures were included aimed at providing additional workplace protections for pregnant employees. The first measure is the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (the “PWFA”) which applies to employers with 15 or more employees. The PWFA extends the … 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

Meal/Rest Break Premium Pay Is A “Wage” For Purposes Of Wage Statements And Timely Pay Requirements

Naranjo v. Spectrum Sec. Servs., Inc., 13 Cal. 5th 93 (2022) Gustavo Naranjo alleged that his employer had not provided an additional hour of pay for each day on which Spectrum failed to provide employees with a legally compliant meal break (i.e., had failed to provide “premium pay” pursuant to Cal. Lab. Code § 226.7). … 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

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

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

November 2021 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted November 2021 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Ninth Circuit Resurrects California’s Anti-Arbitration Statute In-House Counsel’s Claim For Breach Of Oral Promise Of Contingency Fee Was Barred By Statute Employee Can Proceed With … Continue Reading

Employer That Claimed Employment Records Were Stolen Cannot Challenge Calculation Of Lost Wages

Morales v. Factor Surfaces LLC, 2021 WL 4818687 (Cal. Ct. App. 2021) Byron Jerry Morales sued his former employer, Factor Surfaces LLC, and its managing agent for unpaid overtime wages, meal and rest break compensation, statutory penalties, and wrongful termination, among other things.  After a bench trial, the court awarded Morales $99,394.16, including $42,792 in … Continue Reading

September 2021 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted September 2021 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Ninth Circuit Rejects “Paramour Preference” Liability Arising From Supervisor’s Affair With Another Employee $3.5 Million Emotional Distress Award Was “Shockingly Disproportionate” To Evidence Of Harm … Continue Reading

PAGA Plaintiff’s Expert Statistician Should Have Been Permitted To Testify

Zuniga v. Alexandria Care Ctr., LLC, 2021 WL 3560665 (Cal. Ct. App. 2021) Rosalinda Zuniga was employed by Alexandria Care as a housekeeper who filed a PAGA claim, alleging her former employer failed to provide required meal and rest breaks, to indemnify employees for expenditures and to maintain required records.  The trial court excluded the … Continue Reading

Meal/Rest Break Premiums Must Include All Forms of Remuneration

Ferra v. Loews Hollywood Hotel, LLC, 11 Cal. 5th 858 (2021) Like the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), Cal. Lab. Code § 510 requires that employers pay non-exempt employees overtime at their “regular rate[s] of pay.”  Under a different section of the Labor Code and the Industrial Welfare Commission’s Wage Orders, employers also must … Continue Reading

July 2021 California Employment Law Notes

We invite you to review our newly-posted July 2021 California Employment Law Notes, a comprehensive review of the latest and most significant developments in California employment law. The highlights include: Board of Directors Quota Law May Be Unconstitutional 2:1 Ratio of Punitive to Compensatory Damages Was Appropriate High School Football Coach’s Title VII Claim Was … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Overturns $100 Million Wage-Hour Judgment Entered Against Walmart

Magadia v. Wal-Mart Assocs., Inc., 999 F.3d 668 (9th Cir. 2021) In this class action, Roderick Magadia, a former Walmart employee, alleged violations of California’s meal-break and wage-statement requirements (Cal. Lab. Code §§ 226.7 and 226(a)).  After the district court (Judge Lucy H. Koh) determined that Magadia suffered no meal-break violation, it decertified the class, but … Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Holds That Meal And Rest Break Premiums Must Include All Forms Of Remuneration (Not Just Base Hourly Rate)

On July 15, 2021, the California Supreme Court issued its decision in Ferra v. Loews Hollywood Hotel, LLC, in which it held that meal and rest break premiums required under California Labor Code section 226.7 (“Section 226.7”) must be paid at non-exempt employees’ regular rate of pay—not merely their base hourly rate.  The decision, which … Continue Reading
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