California Law Allows Drivers To Proceed With Overtime Claims
The Fair Labor Standard Act (the FLSA) provides certain guarantees to employees such as requiring a minimum rate of pay and that eligible employees must be paid overtime at the rate of 1 ½ times their regular rate of pay.
In addition to federal law, many states have overtime laws. Often, these laws may offer greater employee protections than the FLSA, and may provide substantive and procedural advantages over the FLSA. In many cases, employees are able to choose between filing in state or federal court.
In a recent case involving California and Texas employment law, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that where the complained of actions arose out the nature of employment arrangement, rather than the terms of a contact, “the choice of law provision” contained in the driver’s employment agreements was not dispositive.
In Narayan v. EGL Inc., three California drivers brought a claim against a trucking company alleging that they were denied overtime pay, expense reimbursements, and meal periods required by California law. However, each of the drivers had previously signed independent contractor agreements providing that the agreements “shall be interpreted by the State of Texas.” Although the company argued that Texas law must apply, the Ninth Circuit disagreed, reasoning Texas choice of law provisions only refer to contractual issue. Because the drivers brought their claims under “a California regulatory scheme, the court determined they were entitled to have their claims interpreted pursuant to California law.
Most wage and hour cases may be brought pursuant to the FLSA, however state law may provide additional protections – and additional paths to recovery. If you believe you have been denied all the compensation you are entitled to, an experienced employment lawyer can help you explore your options. For more information, please contact Buckley & Klein, LLP, a Georgia Law firm committed to employee rights.