Los Angeles County Professional Peace Officers’ Ass’n v. County of Los Angeles, 115 Cal. App. 4th 866 (2004)

William Kupper and Bennie Layne worked as investigators for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office before becoming temporarily disabled after being injured on the job. Kupper and Layne both retired after their disabilities became permanent. Under the applicable County ordinances, DA investigators could accumulate up to 320 hours of vacation time before the excess accrual would be cashed out; any amounts that are cashed out are added to the employee’s salary figure that is used to calculate retirement benefits. When Kupper and Layne retired, they were paid for all accumulated vacation hours; however, because the vacation time was cashed out after retirement, it was not included in the calculation of their pension benefits. The Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment, holding that Kupper and Layne were not entitled to have their accrued vacation benefits cashed out prior to their retirement under either the California Labor Code or the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution.