Statute of Limitations for Labor Violations
Statutes of limitations prevent claims that are too old from being pursued in court. The amount of time is prescribed by statute. Although most time limits are relatively clear, sometimes even if the amount of time has passed an employee who was harmed by an employers actions can still bring a lawsuit. For example, California law says that, unless a statute otherwise extends or shortens the time frame, lawsuits based on a liability, other than a penalty, must be brought within 3 years. CCP §338(a).
Extending the statute of limitations up to 4 years is helpful because it allows more employees to join the litigation. Generally when an employer fails to pay an employees wage, it also fails to pay many of its employee’s wages. When employees band together to sue their employer they protect themselves from any retaliation and send a message to the employer that they cannot continue their unfair payment practices. Of course, extending the time frame also potentially increases the amount of damages that an employee may collect.
However, keep in mind that shorter statute of limitations still may apply to some claims under the labor code. In Pineda v. Bank of America, the California Supreme Court stated that waiting time penalties under § 203 of the Labor Code have a three year statute of limitations.
Statute of limitations laws are complex, to learn more about whether your claim still qualifies for a lawsuit contact the attorneys at the Law Offices of Michael S. Cunningham. You can schedule free consultation by calling (951) 213-4786. Timely action can make a big difference in your case.