Archives: Wage and Hour

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California Supreme Court Clarifies “Day of Rest” Requirements

California’s employment laws have consistently caused headaches for employers because even minor technical violations of these laws can fuel class action litigation and prove costly. However, a recent decision by the California Supreme Court, Mendoza v. Nordstrom, Inc. (SC S224611), provides some clarity by tackling three burning questions regarding California’s day of rest statutes – … Continue Reading

Subway Adopts Novel Approach to Stem Wage and Hour Claims

Subway is one of the largest franchisors in the world, with over 26,000 restaurants in the United States alone. It is also in one of the industries most prone to wage and hour claims, a fact reflected in both Department of Labor (DOL) investigations and litigation involving individual outlets. And, predictably, some claimants pursuing wage and … Continue Reading

Court Grants Summary Judgment for Employer in California Class Action Vacation Pay Case

Underlying claim premised on PowerPoint slide invalid Most California employers know that California treats vacation pay largely as a vested benefit that cannot ordinarily be “forfeited.” In common parlance, the state prohibits “use it or lose it” policies. To prevent employees from accruing, or claiming to have accrued, large amounts of vacation time, most California employers … Continue Reading

Statistics in Wage and Hour Class Actions: Has Anything Really Changed?

The probability is “not really” Statistics are kind of a holy grail of class action litigation. Everyone seems to know that they exist, but their understanding is shadowy and the quest to find valid statistical models often proves elusive. Last month’s Supreme Court decision in Tyson Foods, Inc. v. Bouaphakeo, Case No. 14-1146 (Mar. 22, … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Case Addressing Scope of Wage and Hour Class and Collective Actions

It’s hard enough to predict what the Supreme Court will do on a given case even after it has been briefed and oral argument has been heard. It’s even harder when all we have is the decision accepting certiorari, but this one is important enough to note. The Supreme Court has now accepted certiorari in a … Continue Reading

Nevada Supreme Court Finds Class of Strippers Were Employees

Given the extensive use of euphemisms in the exotic dancing trade, we’ll apologize in advance for any unintended puns. We’ve written on the issue of the classification of exotic dancers or strippers in the past [April 8, 2011, October 19, 2011, November 21, 2012], but the question continues to ripple through the courts.  While the … Continue Reading

California District Court Rejects Yet Another Class Settlement

“Another one bites the dust…” In yet another decision rejecting a settlement of an employment class action, the Northern District of California refused to approve a settlement of a wage and hour suit due to numerous problems with the resolution reached between the parties. In Myles v. AlliedBarton Security Services, LLC, Case No. 12-cv-05661-JD (N.D. … Continue Reading

California Supreme Court (!) Issues Strong Pro-Defense Wage and Hour Class Action Decision

“Depending on the nature of the claimed exemption and the facts of a particular case, a misclassification claim has the potential to raise numerous individual questions that may be difficult, or even impossible, to litigate on a classwide basis.” “[T]rial courts deciding whether to certify a class must consider not just whether common questions exist, … Continue Reading

West Virginia District Court Refuses To Certify Fail Safe Class

It’s not uncommon to see putative classes pleaded in terms of the violation of a specific statute, such as “all managers misclassified as exempt by defendant” or “all persons harmed by defendant’s discriminatory policies.”  In all likelihood, classes may be pleaded this way due to the attorney’s bravado that, of course, all of the defendant’s … Continue Reading

California District Court Rejects Overtime Settlement Over $50,000 Incentive Awards

Large incentive awards continue to jeopardize class action settlements.  We wrote on February 14 about recent cases in which Circuit Courts rejected settlements due to disproportionate incentive awards.  A recent case from the Central District of California reflects that lower courts are taking a close look at such awards and the relationship of the size … Continue Reading

Russell v. Citigroup Inc. – Language in Revised Arbitration Agreement Torpedoes its Application to Pending Class Action

A Sixth Circuit panel found the text of an updated arbitration agreement indicated it did not apply to a wage and hour class action already pending when the agreement was signed.  Russell v. Citigroup, Inc., Case No. 13-5994 (6th Cir. April 4, 2014). Keith Russell had worked at a Citicorp call center in Florence, Kentucky … Continue Reading

Eleventh Circuit Affirms Dismissal of RICO Claims

Is there a statute with a better acronym than RICO? The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, apart from its great acronym, has been both a great success and a tool for misuse.  We don’t often see RICO claims in the employment context, let alone employment class actions, and we can’t resist commenting on a … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit “Chases” Away Another Option for Removing PAGA Actions to Federal Court

Authored By: Jeffrey Bils In yet another setback for employers seeking to remove California wage and hour cases to federal court, the Ninth Circuit held that the federal Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”) provides federal courts with no basis to assert jurisdiction over suits filed under the California Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”) … Continue Reading

Employees Seek To Take Bite From Apple (and Urban Outfitters)

Chances are that if you ask someone what they remember from the cult-classic Paul Verhoeven film Total Recall, they’ll recall (among other things) the sequence where Arnold Schwarzenegger attempts to sneak through security.  In the sequence, guards watch all of the citizens passing through on a large x-ray screen which depicts their skeletons (in glorious … Continue Reading
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