Supreme Court Rejects Appeal of California Meal-Break Rule

Michele Fuetsch
Transport Topics
May 05, 2015

The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear appeal of rulings that upheld a California law that requires employers to provide meal breaks to workers.

Penske Logistics was asking the court to overturn decisions by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, based in San Francisco, that said the companies must abide by the state law.

The second case involved Vitran Express, a Canadian carrier. In both cases, drivers were the plaintiffs. The Supreme Court announced May 4 its decision to reject the appeals.

The high court’s decision means that the circuit court decision stands.

The meal-break law requires employers to provide a “duty-free” 30-minute meal break for employees who work more than five hours a day.

The law also requires a second “duty free” 30-minute meal break for those who work more than 10 hours a day.

Lawyers for the logistics company, a division of Penske Truck Leasing Co., had argued that federal law governing trucking companies pre-empted state laws.

The trucking company law is contained in the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994, which provides that a state “may not enact or enforce a law . . . related to a price, route or service of any motor carrier with respect to transportation of property.”

The plaintiffs in the original lawsuit against Penske represented a certified class of 349 delivery truck drivers. They work on an account Penske has that services Whirlpool appliances.

According to court documents, the drivers delive products in California and are on the job more than 10 hours a day.


Be the first to comment

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.
Get Advice Join TDU Donate

Recent News

Five Things the IBT Can Do to Fix the UPS Contract Disaster

Denis Taylor has repeatedly promised local unions and members that he will return to the bargaining table with UPS. But no date has been set. Here are 5 things the IBT can do fix the disaster at UPS. They will only happen if UPSers keep the pressure on.

Put Our Issues on the Table at UPS

Despite declaring the contract ratified, Denis Taylor says he will “return to the bargaining table to address a number of member concerns with the National Master UPS Agreement.” When bargaining resumes, UPSers expect our issues to be addressed.

View More News Posts