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May 2012




HSA contribution limits:

Individuals (self-only coverage) - $3,250 (up $150 from 2012)
Family coverage - $6,450 (up $200 from 2012)
HDHP minimum required deductibles:

$1,250 for self-only coverage
$2,500 for family coverage
Out-of-pocket maximum:

(Out-of-pocket expenses include deductibles, co-payments, and other amounts, but not premiums)

$6,250 for self-only coverage
$12,500 for family coverage



Meal and rest Break ruleは変わったのか?

Meal and rest Break ruleは変わったのか?

California Chamber of CommerceからMeal and rest break rulesが変更になりました!

これを機会にCalifornia Chamber of Commerceの情報を買っていただいてもよいのだが、実際ルールが変わったというよりも、厳密にミールブレイクや休憩時間を管理する必要はないという判断が下されたという方が正しいと思う。



Long-Awaited Brinker Decision Finally Here; Good News for California Employers

Jennifer Carsen, Esq. 16 Apr 2012 6:00 AM 1
The extremely long wait is over: We finally have a decision from the California Supreme Court in the case of Brinker Restaurant Group v. Superior Court of San Diego – and some much-needed guidance on the state’s meal and rest break rules.

超長期に渡る裁判の結果がようやく出された。カリフォルニアの最高裁ではBrinker レストラングループとサンディエゴ上位裁判所のケースの判断が下された。州の食事休憩と休憩時間のルールにガイドが必要だろう。

The employers in the case, Brinker Restaurant Corporation and related companies, own several restaurant chains throughout the state, including Chili’s Grill & Bar and Maggiano’s Little Italy.

この裁判の雇用者Brinker Restaurant Corporationと関連会社は州内にChilli’sやMaggiano’s little italyといった複数のレストランを経営していた。

The Employees’ Allegations

Brinker was sued by several current and former nonexempt employees who claimed that Brinker failed to adequately provide the meal and rest breaks required by state law. Specifically, they claimed that Brinker:


1. Provided fewer meal periods than required by law;

2. Sometimes required “early lunching” – a single meal period soon after the beginning of a shift followed by up to eight or more hours without an additional meal period; and

3. Required employees to work off-the-clock during meal periods and unlawfully altered employee time records.

When Meal and Rest Breaks Must Be Provided

On the issue of when meal periods must be provided, the court concluded that an employer satisfies its meal period obligations by providing one meal period for shifts over 5 hours and two meal periods for shifts over 10 hours.

While the first meal break must generally fall no later than the end of an employee’s 5th hour of work (with the second meal break, if applicable, falling no later than the end of an employee’s 10th hour of work), an employer need not schedule meal breaks at 5-hour Therefore, the employees’ “early lunching” allegations fell apart.

Additionally, employees are entitled to 10 minutes of rest for shifts from 3.5 to 6 hours in length, and to another 10 minutes’ rest for shifts from six hours to 10 hours in length.


Rest periods need not be timed to fall specifically before or after any meal period, though in general, “in the context of an eight-hour shift…one rest break should fall on either side of the meal break. Shorter or longer shifts and other factors that render such scheduling impracticable may alter this general rule.”

What It Means To “Provide” Meal Periods

The court concluded that an employer must relieve the employee of all duty for the designated period, but need not ensure that the employee does no work.

The court also noted that:

Indeed, the obligation to ensure employees do no work may in some instances be inconsistent with the fundamental employer obligations associated with a meal break: to relieve the employee of all duty and relinquish any employer control over the employee and how he or she spends the time.


So what happens if an employee chooses to work through a meal period? According to the court, “If work does continue, the employer will not be liable for premium pay. At most, it will be liable for straight pay, and then only when it ‘knew or reasonably should have known that the worker was working through the authorized meal period.’”


On the other hand, “an employer may not undermine a formal policy of providing meal breaks by pressuring employees to perform their duties in ways that omit breaks.”


Off-the-Clock Claims Dismissed

As for the employees’ claims of off-the-clock work, the court didn’t address the merits of these as it concluded they should not have been brought as a class action.

Bottom Line

The bottom line, of course, is that this decision is very good news for California employers.

It means that you are not required to babysit your workers to ensure that they take their scheduled breaks – and it also means that you are not required to fork over premium pay if they choose to work through them.



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