Plaintiffs? filed? an? unpaid? meal? breaks class action and moved for certification.? ?The court held that if it rejected the plaintiff?s theory that they were all ?on duty? during their entire meal? period,? Rule? 23(b)(3)? predominance? of class wide issues would not be satisfied.?? The district would have to determine on a case by case basis whether meal breaks were or were not missed.? ?The plaintiffs appealed.? ?The Ninth Circuit held that the district court had put the cart before the horse.? ?The district court did not actually reject the plaintiffs? ?on duty? theory, it held that there was no ?assurance? it would be accepted. ?The proper approach would have been to certify the class and then decertify if the court actually?? rejected?? the?? plaintiffs??? legal?? theory. United Steel, Paper & Forestry, Rubber, Mfg. Energy, Allied Indus. & Serv. Workers Int?l Union, AFL-CIO, CLC v. ConocoPhillips Co., 593 F.3d 802 ?(9th?? ?Cir. ?2010) ?(Bybee, ?T.G. ?Nelson, ?M. Smith).
District Court Abuses Discretion in Denying Class Certification Based on Assumption that Plaintiffs? Legal Claims Will Fail
Mar 19, 2010