Tag Archives: Class Action

Lawsuit Filed Against California’s Attorney General Alleging the Private Attorney General Act (“PAGA”) is Unconstitutional

On November 28, 2018, the California Business & Industrial Alliance (an association that represents the interests of small and mid-sized businesses in California and which was formed for the specific purpose of accomplishing the appeal or reform of the Private Attorney General Act (“PAGA”)) filed a lawsuit against Xavier Becerra in his official capacity as … Continue Reading

New CA Case Confirms: No Absolute Rule to Permit Leave to Amend to Substitute Class Representative If Named Plaintiff Is Found Inadequate

In Jones v. Farmers Ins. Exchange (2013) 221 Cal.App.4th 986 (“Jones”), the California Court of Appeal held that “[t]he lack of an adequate class representative … does not justify the denial of the certification motion.  Instead, the trial court must allow Plaintiff[[] an opportunity to amend [his] complaint to name a suitable class representative.  [Citation … Continue Reading

Contracting Around Class Actions, a Win for Employers!

In O’Connor v. Uber Techs., Inc., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 27343 (9th Cir. 2018), a unanimous panel in the Ninth Circuit found that Uber’s arbitration agreements did not violate the National Labor Relations Act of 1935 (“NLRA”) and the question of arbitrability was designated to the arbitrator. The ruling provided a major victory to Uber, … Continue Reading

Settling Plaintiff May Still Have Standing And Adequacy To Pursue Class Action and PAGA Claims

A California federal judge recently certified a class of at least 843 Cinemark workers who allege Cinemark, a movie theater chain, failed to properly list overtime rates on employee wage statements, notwithstanding the fact that the purported class representative, Silken Brown, had settled her individual claim during the pending litigation. In opposing class certification, Cinemark … Continue Reading

Arbitration Agreements

Denying an employer’s motion to compel individual arbitration of a wage and hour class action, a California federal court ruled that the employer’s dispute resolution program violated its employees’ right to engage in concerted action under the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”). Totten v. Kellogg Brown & Root, LLC. Notably, this ruling departs from the … Continue Reading

No Class Action for Residential Care Facility Employees Over On-Duty Meal Periods

Denying class certification in an action for alleged meal period violations under the California Labor Code and Industrial Welfare Commission Wage Order No. 5-2001 (“Wage Order 5”), the California Court of Appeal ruled that a 24-hour residential care facility for developmentally disabled individuals did not have a policy that violated wage and hour laws common … Continue Reading

Why You Should Take a Closer Look at California’s New Piece-Rate Legislation

Employers doing business in California have seen a barrage of class actions and representative claims for various alleged wage and hour Labor Code violations. Some cases are premised solely on “technical” wage statement violations, where the employer may not have even realized the practice was occurring or was unlawful.… Continue Reading

Employer Cannot Enforce Class Action Waiver Because Court of Appeal Rules Interstate Truck Drivers Not Subject to FAA

On October 26, 2015, a California Court of Appeal held that the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) does not apply to interstate truck drivers, and as a result, it ruled that an employer’s class action waiver was unenforceable as a matter of public policy under the California Gentry rule. Garrido v. Air Liquide Industrial U.S. LP, … Continue Reading

California Ban on Waiver of Representative PAGA Claims Not Barred by Federal Arbitration Act, Federal Court Holds

Declining to enforce a representative action waiver contained in an arbitration agreement, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, in San Francisco, has held that the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) does not preempt California’s “Iskanian rule,” which prohibits waiver of representative claims under the state Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (“PAGA”), Cal. Lab. Code § … Continue Reading

First Do No Harm – Dental Practice Goes Too Far in its Communications to Employees About Class Action

No employer welcomes the news that it’s just been served with a wage and hour class action. Many employers naturally desire to communicate with their employees to provide their perspective and to explain why employees may not want to participate in the class action. Before launching such employee communications, however, companies should always consult with legal … Continue Reading

Court’s Flawed Trial Plan Sinks Overtime Class Action against Employer, California Supreme Court Rules

Calling “seriously flawed” a lower court’s trial management plan which used sampling evidence to prove class liability and damages under California law, the California Supreme Court has vacated a $15-million judgment against the employer for overtime pay and remanded the case for a new trial on both liability and damages. Duran v. U.S. Bank National … Continue Reading

California Courts Continue to Embrace Binding Arbitration Agreements

With increasing frequency, California courts (especially federal district courts) are enforcing binding arbitration agreements between employers and employees.  In Richards v. Ernst & Young, No. 11-17530 (9th Cir. Aug. 21, 2013), the Ninth Circuit recently reversed a denial of the employer’s motion to compel arbitration of the employee’s wage and hour claims.  In so doing, … Continue Reading

Court Rules Common Issues Didn’t Dominate in Proposed Class

Class certification is unwarranted where auto center managers and assistant managers alleged they were improperly classified as exempt and denied overtime and meal and rest breaks in violation of the California Labor Code, the California Court of Appeal has ruled in Dailey v. Sears, Roebuck and Co.Statistical Sampling Could Not Establish Liability in Wage-Hour Class … Continue Reading

Class Action Update: Supreme Court Reverses Ninth Circuit Decision Involving Certification of Nationwide Class of 1.5 Million Female Workers

In a decision that many employers have been waiting for since the Ninth Circuit’s decision certifying a class of approximately 1.5 million women, the U.S. Supreme Court has rejected class action certification in “one of the most expansive class actions ever.” See Wal-Mart Stores v. Dukes, No. 10-277 (June 20, 2011). The case involved allegations of gender discrimination in pay … Continue Reading

High Court Rules Against California’s Prohibition of Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements

Continuing to uphold the enforcement of arbitration agreements, the U.S. Supreme Court has struck down the California courts’ refusal to enforce class action waivers in consumer arbitration agreements on the ground that the state law is preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act. AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, No. 09-893 (Apr. 27, 2011). The ruling would appear … Continue Reading

Updates From the Front Lines of California Class Action Litigation and Practical Lessons

An employer who is strategic and proactive in California wage and hour compliance can avoid hundreds of thousands of dollars in potential liabilities and defense costs. For example, there is significant litigation regarding employment applications in California especially the limitations regarding criminal convictions set forth at California Labor Code Section 432.7, et seq. and Section … Continue Reading
LexBlog