Munger, Tolles & Olson client 99¢ Cents Only Stores secured the dismissal of a representative action seeking penalties for failure to provide seats to retail cashiers. This action was one of dozens of suits pending in California courts against almost all major retailers whereby the plaintiffs rely on a decades-old regulation requiring seating for employees to argue for massive penalties because retail cashiers do not have seats.
Munger Tolles’ victory was the first order denying class or representative status in one of these seating cases. The firm obtained the Dec. 7 ruling by making the novel analogy between Labor Private Attorneys General Act cases like this one and unfair competition cases brought prior to Proposition 64 and then relying on unfair competition precedent to preclude representative status. Specifically, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge William Fahey agreed that the case could not proceed on a representative basis because it would be unmanageable and because the plaintiff’s views differed from those of some of those she sought to represent. Since the ruling, the plaintiff has dismissed her action with prejudice.
Different plaintiffs have filed an identical and sought to keep Judge Fahey from handling the matter, but Munger Tolles obtained an order striking that challenge as invalid.
Munger Tolles attorneys Malcolm A. Heinicke, Katherine M. Forster, Esther H. Sung and Puneet K. Sandhu worked on this matter.