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Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 6937
Experience:  Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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I am currently carrying out a mini risk assessment for our

Resolved Question:

I am currently carrying out a mini risk assessment for our company. We have some issues that management has asked us to look into; particularly, we are trying to make sure our time and wage policies are bullet-proof and not subject to any legal action or liability.

While doing so, we have run into some areas that concern the possibility of not giving California private company employees a 30-minute lunch time within 6 hours of their first shift.

Can you provide me with some valid, strong case law that shows the problems that can come about for an employer who never followed up on paying for lunch time sessions that were never issued, or for subsequently NOT paying an "hour wage" for the "30 minute lunch" that was worked? I would just like some concrete case law that I can show management in order to highlight the seriousness of such problems with wage and hour laws.

Also, what is the statute of limitations for employees who were never timely paid for such infractions? I have read that some situations warrant the use of a 3-year SOL, while 4 years may also be used? (See Murphy v. Kenneth Cole case).

Please feel free to ask any questions and I will try my best to explain the situation. I am just hoping that an experienced employment attorney can provide some black letter law and cases that I can base my study on.

Thank you.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  Patrick, Esq. replied 11 months ago.
Good afternoon and thank you for entrusting me to answer your question. I will do everything I can to assist you.

Have you come across the Brinker case from last year? That case addressed a specific legal question involving lunch break law (specifically, what an employer needs to do in order to satisfy their obligation to "provide" lunches) but does a very good job of explaining the law more generally and is a good "primer" into the more nuanced aspects of rest and meal period laws in CA. See here: http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=2231214341353251042&q=brinker+restaurant&hl=en&as_sdt=2,5

The failure to provide lunch breaks can pose a rather serious problem for an employer. The penalty is one hour's wages for each violation, and can go back FOUR years if the claim is filed in civil court (rather than with the DLSE) and the claimant can prove the violation was willful. Otherwise, the 3 year limitations period applies.

Please do not hesitate to let me know if you have any questions or concerns regarding the above and I will be more than happy to assist you further.

If you do not require any further assistance, please be so kind as to provide a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you. Very best wishes to you and thank you so much for coming to Just Answer.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Satisfied Customers: 6937
Experience: Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
Patrick, Esq. and 2 other California Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 11 months ago.

Thanks much, LegalPro. I'm going to research a few more areas of this problem, and will read the case you linked. I may come back with a follow-up inquiry, so I'll keep the question open without a rating for a few hours. Rest assured, though, that I will close the question and rate you ASAP.


 


Many thanks!

Expert:  Patrick, Esq. replied 11 months ago.
Shaun,

Thanks for your reply. Sounds very good. I will look forward to your reply, and of course I am very happy to address any followup questions you may have.

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