Kennedy Donohue, a nurse recruiter, was the lead plaintiff in a class action lawsuit filed against AMN Services, LLC. AMN used a timekeeping system called Team Time which rounded its timekeeping in ten-minute increments. In the lawsuit, Donohue alleged that she was discouraged from taking breaks and had to take short breaks. AMN’s written policies stated that nurse recruiters were paid premium wages for mealtimes when their employee timecards reflected that the employees had not taken a 30-minute meal in compliance with California law.
After a lot of litigation in the trial and then higher courts, the case finally ended up in the California Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court held that employers cannot “round” meal period time punches. The Court noted that even relatively minor infringements on meal periods can cause substantial burdens on employees.
The takeaway is that rounding, even if in the employees’ favor, is no substitute for strict compliance.
California favors employees and the laws change constantly depending on what the courts say and what the legislature decides. Our advice to businesses is not to take any chances. When you have any questions about your business and employees, we have very experienced business and employment law attorneys who can help you.
Call us at 949-436-2785 or visit our website at www.glgattorneys.com