Gonzalez v. Beck, 158 Cal. App. 4th 598 (2007)

Josepha Gonzalez worked as a caregiver and housekeeper for the Beck Family. Upon the termination of her employment, she filed a claim for unpaid wages with the California Labor Commissioner. When the Becks failed to answer or appear at the administrative hearing, Gonzalez obtained an award of $70,238.54 (including interest and penalties) from the Commissioner upon which judgment was subsequently entered. The Becks’ motion to set aside the judgment was denied by the trial court on the ground that they had failed to exhaust their administrative remedies under Labor Code § 98(f), which requires defendants to move to set aside the award before the Commissioner prior to seeking judicial relief from a default. The Court of Appeal affirmed the judgment. Cf. McCoy v. Superior Court, 157 Cal. App. 4th 225 (2007) (claim for waiting-time penalties is subject to one-year rather than four-year statute of limitations).