Wage and hour lawsuits are about to get even more expensive for employers. A.B. 2074 is a bill that would modify California labor law concerning minimum wage violations. The bill passed the state Senate on Monday on a 25-10 vote and now heads to Governor Jerry Brown. The new bill would allow employees to pursue liquidated damages anytime before the expiration of the statute of limitations for bringing the underlying action alleging minimum wage violations.
This legislation comes after a 2013 California court of appeals decision that held employees can recover wages for three years of minimum wage violations but only one year of liquidated damages. The new bill aims to allow employees to recover liquidated damages for the entire three year statute of limitations period.
This new bill was proposed by Assemblyman Roger Hernandez, D – West Covina. Hernandez states, “A.B. 2074 holds companies accountable for wage theft and simplifies the process for recovering illegally held wages.” Hernandez went on to state that “A.B. 2074 only targets businesses who fail to follow the law. It is crucial that we protect the rights of our lowest-paid workers, prevent abuse and curb labor law violations in California.”
A.B. 2074 has support from labor groups such as the California Labor Federation, Unite Here, and the California Federation of Teachers. There has been no formal opposition from business groups to this bill.
Counsel to Management: Contact The Saqui Law Group immediately if you believe that you are exposed to liability with respect to potential wage and hour violations. With the new legislation before Governor Brown, wage and hour lawsuits are going to cost employers even more for failure to pay appropriate wages.