Piplack v. In-N-Out Burgers, 88 Cal.App.5th 1281 (2023)
Former employees of In-N-Out Burgers, on their own behalf and on behalf of similarly aggrieved employees, brought an action against In-N-Out Burgers seeking civil penalties under the Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act for In-N-Out Burgers’s alleged practices of requiring employees, without reimbursement, to purchase and wear certain articles of clothing and to purchase and use special cleaning products to maintain the clothes. In reliance on Viking River Cruises, Inc. v. Moriana, ––– U.S. ––––, 142 S.Ct. 1906 (2022), In-N-Out Burgers filed a motion to compel arbitration, arguing that Viking River requires plaintiffs’ individual PAGA claims to be arbitrated and all remaining representative claims dismissed for lack of standing. The trial court summarily denied In-N-Out Burgers’ motion to compel arbitration. In-N-Out Burgers appealed.
The Court of Appeal concluded that the arbitration agreements required individual PAGA claims to be arbitrated and that In-N-Out Burgers did not waive its right to compel arbitration through its litigation conduct. The Court of Appeal also held that Viking River’s requirement that the plaintiff’s individual claims under PAGA be compelled to arbitration did not necessarily deprive the plaintiff of standing to pursue representative claims as an aggrieved employee.