In a huge win for California employers, the California Court of Appeals recently confirmed that courts have discretion to strike claims for penalties under the Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (“PAGA”) if the claims will be unmanageable at trial.  This decision will help employers defeat—or significantly pare down—the broad and unwieldy claims for PAGA penalties that have become popular with the plaintiffs’ bar.
Continue Reading Courts Have Authority to Strike Unmanageable PAGA Claims, Says CA Court of Appeals

Many employers use rounding methods to adjust the hours that an employee works to the nearest time increment, such as every five or ten minutes.  The California Supreme Court has ruled, however, that this rounding practice is impermissible at the meal period.  Equally as troubling for employers, the Court also held that time records showing a noncompliant meal period raise a “rebuttable presumption” of meal period violations.
Continue Reading California Supreme Court Declares Employers Cannot Round Workers’ Time At The Meal Period And Records Can Raise Rebuttable Presumption Of Violations

For over 30 years, most district courts throughout the country have used a two-step conditional certification process to govern certification of collective actions under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  But in its recent and game-changing opinion, the Fifth Circuit rejected that two-step process and laid out a stricter framework for FLSA collective actions. 
Continue Reading Fifth Circuit Rejects Two-Step FLSA Certification Process

California recently enacted Assembly Bill 1867, requiring all private employers with 500 or more employees to provide COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave for their California employees.  Employers must begin providing supplemental sick leave, under the new law, no later than September 19, 2020.  The law will remain in effect until the later of December 31, 2020 or expiration of any federal extension of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
Continue Reading California Expands COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave

Employee commute time in California generally is not compensable as “time worked” unless the employee is subject to the employer’s control and unable to use that time for his or her own purposes.  But is an employee subject to the employer’s control if she is required to carry her employer’s equipment and tools in her personal vehicle?  According to a California Court of Appeal, the answer could depend on the size of the vehicle.
Continue Reading Does the Car You Drive Impact Whether Your Commute Is Compensable? The CA Court of Appeal Says “Maybe”

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed employers to an influx of novel employment law issues.  Many employers already have experienced an uptick in related internal complaints or litigation. We identify five particular employment law liabilities employers may be exposed to once the dust settles from the pandemic.
Continue Reading Top Five Employment Law Liabilities Facing Employers Post-Pandemic

A federal district court in Florida recently declined to conditionally certify a nationwide collective action brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act because the plaintiff did not show sufficient evidence that she was similarly situated to other restaurant managers who wanted to join.
Continue Reading Federal Court Denies Conditional Certification of Collective Action Involving Restaurant Managers

The California Court of Appeals for the Second District evaluated the validity of unlimited vacation policies in a recent decision. Unlimited vacation policies operate how one might expect: instead of having a specific number of hours vest that the employee can use to take paid time off, an unlimited policy provides that the employee can take as much vacation per year as they would like to subject to company approval. In California, when vacation vests, it is treated as wages at termination and must be paid out. Since unlimited vacation does not vest, there is no payment due at termination.
Continue Reading Unlimited Vacation Policies in California – New Decision

On April 16, 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom issued Executive Order N-51-20, which requires California employers in the food sector industry to provide certain workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic with up to 80 hours of supplemental paid sick leave.
Continue Reading California Employers In The Food Sector Industry Ordered To Provide COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave