Friday, February 13, 2015

Class Cert Giveth but SJ Taketh Away

Augustus v. ABM Sec. Svcs., No. B243788 (D2d1 Jan. 29, 2015)

The trial court certified a wage and hour class of security guards, on the premise that they were required to stay on call during their regular paid breaks. It also granted them summary judgment on the grounds that such a policy is facially illegal under Labor Code § 226.7 and the relevant wage order. The court of appeal renders a split decision on this issue. Because it was essentially uncontested that the on-call-while-on-break issue was a company-wide policy, it was appropriate, under the governing Brinker standard, to certify a class on the issue. So that’s affirmed. Problem for plaintiffs, however, is that, so long as any actually interrupted break time is compensated or made up for, an on-call-during-break policy isn’t necessarily illegal. So plaintiffs’ summary judgment on that ground gets reversed.

Affirmed in part and reversed in part. 

Update: Review granted, April 29, 2015.

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