Archives: Meal and Rest Periods

Subscribe to Meal and Rest Periods RSS Feed

Court Approves Overtime Class Settlement After Initially Rejecting It

We wrote last May about the court’s rejection of a $1.75 million settlement in Cruz v. Sky Chefs, Inc., Case No. C-12-02705 DMR (N.D. Cal. 2014) [May 27, 2014]. The court’s decision related to the settlement of run-of-the-mill California wage and hour claims purportedly brought on behalf of approximately 3,000 employees involved in the preparation … Continue Reading

Another Federal Court Decertifies FLSA Collective Action of Hospital Workers Challenging Auto-Deduct Policy

We have previously discussed that, while medical providers have become a common target of plaintiffs asserting wage and hour claims arising out of so-called “auto-deduct” policies, more and more courts are realizing that the inherently fact-specific nature of these lawsuits make class treatment very difficult.  See our posts from June 23, 2014, and September 17, … Continue Reading

The Ninth Circuit Puts Up Road Block to Motor Carrier Arguing that California Break Laws are Preempted by the FAAA Act, But Leaves Some Wiggle Room

On Wednesday, the United States Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals rendered a decision that, on its face, involved a technical preemption issue, but one that will have serious repercussions for those in the transportation industry operating in California.  In plain terms, the question was whether California’s detailed meal and rest break requirements conflict with a … Continue Reading

California District Court Rejects Class Action Settlement Due To Fee, Enhancement, and Other Issues

Do your homework before you seek approval of a class action settlement! Meals on airlines have all but disappeared for anyone other than those in first class, but the company Sky Chefs contends on its website that it still serves over  a million airplane meals a day.  No, really!  And, apparently, many of those meals are … Continue Reading

Employers Win Some, Lose Some, in California Cases Started Prior to Dukes

Despite blockbuster cases like Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, 131 S. Ct. 2541 (2011), and Brinker Rest. Corp. v. Superior Court, 273 P.3d 513, 527 (Cal. 2012), California remains a hotbed of employment class litigation as a recent spate of cases reflects.  The Dukes case and others have certainly helped to level the playing field … Continue Reading

Dukes Of Hazard: Uniform Auto-Deduct Meal/Break Policy Insufficient to Establish 23(a)(2) Commonality

The Supreme Court’s Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes opinion has once again played Bo and Luke to a plaintiff’s Boss Hogg. The plaintiffs in Raposo v. Garelick Farms LLC, Case No. 11-11943, D. Mass. (July 11, 2013), were truck drivers who made deliveries out of two locations operated by a dairy distribution company.  The company … Continue Reading

Pennsylvania District Court Denies Certification Of Off-The-Clock Case (Again)

“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, again,” or so the adage goes.  A recent case suggests that may not always be the right strategy or, more apropos to this blog, that off-the-clock cases make poor fodder for class action claims.  In Hernandez v. Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc., Civil Action No. 10-5459 (E.D. Pa. … Continue Reading

The Fourth Circuit Uncovers A Lack Of Certification Analysis In Recent Pinkerton Class Action

On November 6, 1860, Abraham Lincoln was elected the 16th President of the United States.  Shortly after his election, rumors of a possible plot to assassinate the decidedly pro-Union President-elect began to circulate.  With several Southern states threatening secession from the Union, the tension in the D.C. area was palpable.  On February 23, 1861, Lincoln … Continue Reading

Ohio District Court Decertifies Class of Health Care Workers in Meal Break Case

We’ve commented several times in the past on the importance of the second phase of the two-step procedure now commonly employed by district courts in Fair Labor Standards Act cases.  Under that procedure, courts will typically apply a lenient standard for “conditional certification,” really notice to the class, at the first stage.  Following an opt-in … Continue Reading

Court of Appeal Turns Volume Down on Plaintiff in Meal Period Class Action Against RadioShack

Authorship credit: Dawn Kennedy The California Court of Appeal has maintained the recent post-Brinker trend of refusing to certify cases involving meal and rest period claims where an employer has a compliant break policy.  In 2004, plaintiff Morry Brookler, a former RadioShack employee, asserted claims for meal period violations on behalf of “all non-exempted employees at … Continue Reading

California District Court Refuses to Certify Retail Rest and Meal Period Case

In the wake of the California Supreme Court’s decision in Brinker Restaurant v. Superior Court, 165 Cal. 4th 1004 (2012) (see our post on the decision), cases refusing to certify rest and meal period have become far more common as a recent decision from the United States District Court for the Central District of California … Continue Reading

Sixth Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment and Decertification of Auto-Deduction Overtime Case

Punching in and out for meals and breaks is a pain – both for the employees and the employer.  As a result, many employers use so-called auto deduction policies for meal periods and breaks, letting employees take their rest periods without punching in and out, but deducting a set time, usually 30 minutes for the … Continue Reading

Judge Denies Class Certification as California Courts Continue to Weather the Wake of Brinker

Sometimes, when a heavily hyped movie arrives in theaters, the tremendous business it generates can have a negative effect on all the other surrounding films.  For example, The Avengers landed in American cinemas on May 4, 2012.  Since that time, not only has it racked up astronomical box office figures of its own (in fact, … Continue Reading

Court Rejects NLRB’s Restrictive View of Class Action Waivers in Arbitration

NLRB’s D.R. Horton Decision and Public Policy Cannot Undermine Concepcion – Morvant v. P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, Inc. A Northern District of California judge has held that neither the National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB”) decision in  D.R. Horton, Inc., 357 N.L.R.B. No. 184 (January 3, 2012), nor the Norris-LaGuardia Act, 29 U.S.C. §§ 101 et … Continue Reading

California Appeals Court Finds Plaintiffs’ Counsel Inadequate, Upholds Denial of Class Certification Motion

It’s bad enough that a plaintiff’s attorney loses a motion to certify a class – it must be even worse when the reason the motion is denied is the attorney’s own failure to plead his case properly.  A recent California court of appeals decision affirmed the denial of a California meal and rest break class … Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Decides Brinker

Employers Prevail on Duty to Provide Meal Periods; Mostly Good on Certification “We will decide no case before its time.” Alright, that’s not really the California Supreme Court’s motto, but it certainly did take its time deciding the Brinker case. During the three and a half years the case was pending before the state Supreme … Continue Reading

California Appeals Court Rejects Attempt to Try California Misclassification Case by Statistics

The California Court of Appeal issued a rare decision in favor of employers last week, when it reversed a class action judgment of $15 million and decertified a class of 260 current and former bank employees who claimed they had been misclassified as exempt and were therefore entitled to meal and rest break premiums.  News … Continue Reading

California Court Finds Meal and Rest Break Requirements Preempted

Court Washes Out Meal and Rest Break Claims for Class of Whirlpool Drivers and Installers Tired of the stains those pesky meal and rest break requirements leave on your California operations? If your business is a motor carrier covered by the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994 (“FAAA Act”), some power to help clean … Continue Reading

Unaccepted Offers of Judgment Ineffective in FLSA Collective Cases

Plaintiffs frequently include collective action allegations in even run-of-the-mill FLSA cases. What if an employer concludes, however, that no matter how frivolous the underlying claim, the defense costs will be more than even an oversized settlement? In theory, an offer of judgment under Federal Rule 68 would be one avenue. By offering the plaintiff all … Continue Reading

Court Denies Certification of California Rest and Meal Period Class Against Apple

Another court has denied certification of a rest and meal period case under California law, this one relying at least in part on the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, Case No. 10-277, 564 U.S.___ (Jun. 20, 2011).  While many courts are simply staying California rest/meal period cases pending the outcome, if there ever … Continue Reading

Another Court Denies Certification of a California Meal Break Class

The obligation to provide rest and meal periods has vexed California employers since its inception.  While few employers would quibble with the notion that employees should have reasonable time off during work for breaks and meals, the language of the applicable wage order and its interpretation by some courts may create severe problems and class action claims.   Central … Continue Reading
LexBlog