Jaimez v. DAIOHS U.S.A., Inc., 181 Cal. App. 4th 1286 (2010)

Alex Jaimez, a former Route Sales Representative (RSR) for DAIOHS U.S.A., Inc., dba DAIOHS First Choice Services (First Choice), filed this putative class action alleging that First Choice deliberately misclassified employees as exempt from overtime, failed to provide them with meal and rest break periods, and failed to provide legally compliant paystubs. The trial court denied the motion to certify the class on the ground that Jaimez’s claims were not typical, that common issues of law and fact did not predominate, and that Jaimez was not an adequate class representative because he had lied on his First Choice employment application about his felony conviction and incarceration and had purportedly falsified time records and other documents. The Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s order denying class certification on the ground that nine of the RSR declarations that Jaimez provided were sufficient to demonstrate certification was appropriate – and the 25 declarations First Choice submitted only suggested that the potential damages to individual RSRs might vary. The Court did, however, affirm the trial court’s determination that Jaimez was not an adequate class representative and ordered that a new class representative be appointed. See also United Steel Workers v. ConocoPhillips Co., 593 F.3d 802 (9th Cir. 2010) (district court improperly denied class certification on claims arising from alleged failure to provide duty-free meal periods despite possibility that plaintiffs could not satisfy requirement that questions of law and fact common to class members predominated over individual questions).