Supreme Court of California

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Gentry v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County (Circuit City Stores, Inc.), S141502

In the context of employees whose statutory rights to overtime pay pursuant to Labor Code sections 500 et seq. and 11941 allegedly have been violated, class arbitration waivers in employment arbitration agreements should not be enforced if a trial court determines, based on specific factors, that class arbitration would be a significantly more effective way of vindicating the rights of affected employees than individual arbitration. Also, a finding of procedural unconscionability is not required to invalidate a class arbitration waiver if that waiver implicates unwaivable statutory rights, but such a finding is a prerequisite to determining that the arbitration agreement as a whole is unconscionable.

Appellate Information

  • Decided 08/30/2007
  • Published 08/30/2007

Judges

  • MORENO, J.

Court

  • Supreme Court of California

Counsel

  • For Appellant:
  • Riordan & Horgan, Dennis P. Riordan, San Francisco;  Righetti & Wynne, Righetti Law Firm, Matthew Righetti, San Francisco, John Glugoski;  Law Offices of Ellen Lake and Ellen Lake, Oakland, for Petitioner., Altshuler, Berzon, Nussbaum, Rubin & Demain, Michael Rubin, Dorthea Langsam, San Francisco;  McGuinn, Hillsman & Palefsky and Cliff Palefsky, San Francisco, for International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Laborers International Union of North America, Service Employees International Union, Unite-Here and California Employment Lawyers Association as Amici Curiae on behalf of Petitioner., Goldstein, Demchak, Baller, Borgen & Dardarian, Laura L. Ho, Oakland, and Jospeh E. Jaramillo, for Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, Asian Law Caucus, Asian Pacific American Legal Center, California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation, Hastings Civil Justice Clinic, Impact Fund, The Katherine and George Alexander Community Law Center, La Raza Centro Legal, Inc., Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area, The Legal Aid Society of San Francisco-Employment Law Center and Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund as Amici Curiae on behalf of Petitioner., Law Office of Michael H. Crosby and Michael H. Crosby, San Diego, as Amici Curiae on behalf of Petitioner., Edmund G. Brown, Jr., Attorney General, Tom Greene, Chief Assistant Attorney General, Albert Norman Shelden, Assistant Attorney General, Ronald A. Reiter and Michele R. Van Gelderen, Deputy Attorneys General, as Amici Curiae on behalf of Petitioner., Berry & Block, Rex Darrell Berry, Scott M. Plamondon, Sacramento;  Jones Day and Steven B. Katz, Los Angeles, for Real Party in Interest., Littler Mendelson, Henry D. Lederman, Lisa C. Chagala and Harry M. Decourcy, Walnut Creek, for Ralphs Grocery Company as Amicus Curiae on behalf of Real Party in Interest., Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton, Richard J. Simmons, Kelly L. Hensley and Melissa K. Lee, Los Angeles, for National Retail Federation and California Retailers Association as Amici Curiae on behalf of Real Party in Interest., Deborah J. La Fetra and Timothy Sandefur, Sacramento, for Pacific Legal Foundation as Amicus Curiae on behalf of Real Party in Interest., National Chamber Litigation Center, Robin S. Conrad;  Constantine Cannon, W. Stephen Cannon, Raymond C. Fay;  Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw and Donald M. Falk, Palo Alto, for Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America and Retail Industry Leaders Association as Amici Curiae on behalf of Real Party in Interest., Jones Day, Elwood Lui and Harry I. Johnson III, Los Angeles, for Federated Department Stores, Inc., as Amicus Curiae on behalf of Real Party in Interest., Fulbright & Jaworski and James R. Evans, Los Angeles, for U-Haul Co. of California as Amicus Curiae on behalf of Real Party in Interest., Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, Rebecca D. Eisen, Brett M. Schuman and John D. Battenfeld, Los Angeles, for Employers Group as Amicus Curiae on behalf of Real Party in Interest., Stroock & Stroock & Lavan, Julia B. Strickland, James W. Denison and Andrew W. Moritz, Los Angeles, for California Bankers Association, American Bankers Association, Consumer Bankers Association and American Financial Services Association as Amici Curiae on behalf of Real Party in Interest.

  • For Appellees:
  • No appearance for Respondent.

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