California Labor &
Employment Law Blog
Jul 11, 2011

Court Weighs In on Meaning of Split Shifts

Topics: Court Decisions, Wage & Hour Issues

California requires that extra compensation be paid to employees who are required to work "split shifts," generally referring to daily work shifts that are separatedby several hours ofnon-worktime. In SecuritasSecurity Services v. Superior Court (Holland), a group of employeesbrought a class action against their employer, alleging the employer failed to pay them required split shift premiums. Thealleged split shift? Working consecutive overnight shifts starting in the evening and ending in the morning. The employer defined its workday to begin at midnight each day and the employees therefore argued that by ending one shift in the morning and starting another in the evening of the same day, they were working "split shifts" and had to be compensated accordingly. The court appropriately rejected the plaintiffs' tortured interpretation of a split shift and held that split shift pay need not be paid in such circumstances involving consecutive overnight shifts.

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Robin Largent has a regular presence in California state and federal courts and has been lead defense counsel and appellate counsel for large and small California employers in litigation (and arbitration) ranging from individual discrimination and harassment claims to complex wage and hour representative and class actions. She also leads the firm’s appellate practice, having substantial experience and success handling appeals, writ petitions, and amicus briefs in both state and federal court on issues such as class certification (particularly in the wage and hour arena), manageability and due process concerns associated with class action trials, exempt/non-exempt misclassification issues, meal and rest break compliance, trade secret/unfair competition matters, and the scope of federal court jurisdiction under the Class Action Fairness Act.
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