As we wrote about previously here, in October 2022, the Sixth District of the California Court of Appeal in Camp v. Home Depot U.S.A., Inc., 84 Cal.App.5th 638 (2022), ignored a decade of precedent and found Home Depot’s total time rounding for its non-exempt employees was unlawful. In so holding, the court held, “if an employer, as in this case, can capture and has captured the exact amount of time an employee has worked during a shift, the employer must pay the employee for ‘all the time’ worked.” The court rejected at least half a dozen prior appellate opinions and instead focused on carefully selected passages from the California Supreme Court’s holding in Troester v. Starbucks, 5 Cal.5th 829 (2018) and Donohue v. AMN, 11 Cal.5th 58 (2021). In Troester, the Supreme Court held the federal de minimis doctrine did not apply in California, and employees must be paid for all time worked, even during activities that occur regularly but take only a few minutes per day before clocking in (e.g., undergoing a bag check). In Donohue, the Supreme Court rejected time rounding for 30-minute meal periods, although it did not address whether rounding of clock punches for in and out times when shifts begin and end was improper. Continue Reading Home Depot Files Opening Brief in California Supreme Court Case Set to Determine Validity of Time Clock Rounding

California’s Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (“PAGA”) allows employees to act as an “agent” of the State of California and recover civil penalties for violations of the Labor Code through a civil action filed on behalf of themselves and other current or former employees. In Viking River Cruises, Inc. v. Moriana, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Federal Arbitration Act partially preempted a California rule prohibiting employers from requiring their employees to enter into pre-dispute arbitration agreements that contractually waived the right to assert “representative” claims under PAGA. Viking River held that while California could validly prohibit pre-dispute arbitration agreements effecting “wholesale waivers” of PAGA claims, the Federal Arbitration Act preempts any rule against requiring employees to arbitrate their “individual” PAGA claims.Continue Reading Fording Viking River, Another California Court of Appeal Holds That PAGA Plaintiffs Maintain Standing to Pursue “Representative” Claims Even if Compelled to Arbitrate “Individual” Claims

The City of Los Angeles’ Fair Work Week Ordinance will take effect on April 1, 2023. The Ordinance, which was unanimously passed by the Los Angeles City Council in November 2022, requires retail employers in the City of Los Angeles to provide employees at least 14 days’ advance notice of their work schedules and to compensate employees in the event of certain schedule changes. You can read our prior blog article on the Los Angeles Fair Work Week Ordinance here.Continue Reading UPDATED: The City of Los Angeles’ Fair Work Week Ordinance Will Take Effect April 1, 2023

On February 2, 2023, the California Court of Appeal issued an important follow-up decision to the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Viking River Cruises, Inc. v. Moriana, U.S. —, 142 S. Ct. 1906 (2022). Galarsa v. Dolgen California, LLC, — Cal. Rptr. 3d — , 2023 WL 2212196 (2023),addresses whether a plaintiff alleging claims under the California Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (PAGA) retains standing to assert claims premised on California Labor Code violations suffered by other employees when the claims arising from alleged violations suffered by the plaintiff are compelled to arbitration. The Court of Appeal ordered Galarsa published on February 24, 2023, making the decision binding on state trial courts for the time being.Continue Reading California Court of Appeal Holds That a PAGA Plaintiff Maintains Standing to Assert Representative Claims Even When Individual Claims Are Compelled to Arbitration

The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (“FLSA”) created the right to a minimum wage and overtime pay. The FLSA also provides exemptions to overtime pay requirements for certain employees. Under the “bona fide executive” exemption, “highly compensated employees” are exempt from overtime if performing at least one qualifying job duty. However, on February 22, 2023, the United States Supreme Court, in its 6-3 decision in Helix Energy Solution Group, Inc. v. Hewitt, clarified that highly compensated employees paid on a “day-rate” do not qualify for this exemption because a day-rate does not satisfy the salary basis test.Continue Reading Supreme Court Clarifies a “Day-Rate” Does Not Meet the FLSA “Salary Basis” Test, Even for Highly Compensated Employees

The Third Circuit is expected to soon make a decision as to whether student-athletes can be considered university “employees” under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). But its interpretation of the law might reverberate beyond the confines of college sports and could implicate whether unpaid student interns must also be treated as employees.Continue Reading What the Third Circuit’s Looming Decision Regarding Whether College Athletes Can Constitute “Employees” Will Mean for Universities and Employers of Unpaid Student Interns

As we previously reported here last fall, California enacted a pay transparency law (SB 1162) requiring employers with 15 or more employees to disclose pay scales in job postings beginning January 1, 2023. The Labor Commissioner recently issued guidance in the form of FAQs to address some of the unanswered questions regarding the interpretation and enforcement of the California Equal Pay Act.Continue Reading California Labor Commissioner Issues FAQs Clarifying Pay Transparency Law

Los Angeles City retail employers may soon be subject to significant new employee scheduling requirements. On November 22, 2022, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously passed the Fair Work Week Ordinance (the “Ordinance”). The new Ordinance, set to become effective on April 1, 2023, will require retail employers in the City of Los Angeles to provide employees at least 14 days’ advance notice of their work schedules and to compensate employees in the event of certain schedule changes. The Ordinance is still pending approval by the Mayor.Continue Reading The City of Los Angeles’ Fair Work Week Ordinance Requires Predictable Scheduling

Rounding is the practice of capturing time entries on a time clock and converting them to the closest five, ten, or fifteen minute equivalent. For example, both entries at 8:58 and 9:04 may be converted to 9:00 a.m. A recent California Court of Appeal decision, Camp v. Home Depot U.S.A., Inc., calls into question the continued viability of time-rounding policies in California. In 2012, the Court of Appeal held in See’s Candy Shops, Inc. v. Superior Court, 210 Cal. App. 4th 889 (2012), that an employer’s time rounding policy is lawful under California law when the policy is “fair and neutral on its face” and is used in a way that will not result, over a period of time, “in failure to compensate the employees properly for all the time they have actually worked.” As generally applied, the See’s Candy test permitted time clock rounding systems so long as the rounding was to the nearest set increment as opposed to always rounding against the employee. Multiple appellate decisions after See’s Candy cited it favorably in granting summary judgment to the employer.Continue Reading California Court of Appeal Limits the Permissibility of Time Rounding

On October 24, 2022, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in Cadena v. Customer Connex LLC, concerning whether the time employees spend booting up and shutting down their computers is compensable under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). Although the case arose out of a call center in Las Vegas, Nevada, where the employees’ principal duties included answering customer phone calls, this case may affect all employers whose employees spend time turning on their computers to work.Continue Reading Time Spent Booting Up Computers May Be Compensable Under the Fair Labor Standards Act