Employers in the state of California have been dealing with lawsuits in recent years over small amounts of time employees spend on minor tasks before clocking in. These lawsuits have been filed over things like the amount of time employees spend waiting for their computers to start-up and how long it takes to open and close-up a store.
In the case of Troester v. Starbucks, judges in California’s Supreme Court ruled that the state’s Labor Code and wage orders have not adopted the federal de minimis rule that excludes payment for small amounts of time, as long as the employer can show the amounts of time are too difficult to keep track of administratively. The Court said that under California labor laws, employees can’t routinely work for minutes off the clock without being paid
Although the court recognized that in principle, California law isn’t concerned with small or trivial things, it refused to apply the same principle to this case, and took into consideration the fact that Starbucks required employees to regularly work minutes off the clock.
Because the court did not provide employers with clear guidance to remedy this issue, the question still remains as to which circumstances are unreasonable to keep track of. This decision has major implications for California based employers and will likely result in a major wave of wage and hour lawsuits from employees who have been underpaid for the time they spend off the clock prepping for and wrapping up their work shift.
Hollister Unpaid Wage Attorney
At Polaris Law Group, we believe that workers deserve to be paid for all of the labor they perform. That is why our legal team is here to fight for your rights and pursue maximum compensation on your behalf. We have years of experience with the following types of unpaid wage cases:
- Minimum wage violations
- Failure to provide meal breaks
- Improper pooling of tips
- Unpaid time for work performed before or after a work shift
Visit our law office today to speak with one of our experienced legal professionals today about how we can help ensure your interests are fully protected.