San Francisco County Superior Court Judge Robert L. Dondero has granted certification in a meal and rest break case brought on behalf of 345 truck drivers employed by White Cap Construction Supply (Castro v. White Cap Construction Supply, Inc., case no. CSC-05-446144). The court took into account the recent decision in Bell v. Superior Court (H.F. Cox, Inc.) (2007) __ Cal.App.4th __, and nonetheless exercised his discretion to grant certification. The order demonstrates that the defendant mounted considerable evidence to support its arguments, which were typical of those which defendants always raise when making the claim that rest period cases are not certifiable
There are now at least six contested rest period certifications we know of, some of which withstood appeal in unpublished decisions, one of which didn't.
On the issue regarding the employer's obligation to ensure that drivers take meal periods, Judge Dondero followed Cicairos v. Summit Logistics (2005) 133 Cal.app.4th 949 and Zavala v. Scott Bros. Dairy, Inc. (2006) 143 Cal.app.4th 585, and found White v. Starbucks Corp (N.D. Cal. 2007) 2007 WL 1952957. The meal period issue is perhaps the new "hottest" wage and hour issue out there, and perhaps we'll see Castro v. White Cap Construction Supply, Inc. again as a published appellate decision.