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You are here: MacNN Forums > News > Mac News > Court dismisses employee lawsuit over Apple bag search policy

Court dismisses employee lawsuit over Apple bag search policy
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MacNN Staff
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Nov 9, 2015, 07:53 AM
A class-action suit relating to Apple's employee bag search policy was shut down by a federal judge over the weekend. The ruling on Saturday halts proceedings for the suit, which sought to force the company to pay its retail staff for their time spent waiting for their bag to be inspected by managers before and after their shift, with the judge primarily dismissing the suit over the fact employees could avoid being searched by not using bags at all.

The lawsuit started in 2013, but was halted last year following after a similar suit against Amazon concerning warehouse employees was dismissed. The complaint was later revised to apply only to the 12,400 former and current Apple Store staff in California under state laws, claiming Apple owed employees more than $1,400 per year in lost wages as compensable overtime.

While the policy wasted employee time without compensating them for it, the case effectively collapsed because of the entirely optional nature of bringing bags to work, and that it could have been easily avoided. Bloomberg reports US District Judge William Alsup as ruling "It is undisputed that some employees did not bring bags to work and thereby did not have to be searched when they left the store."

Lee Shalov, representing the employees, advises the "Plaintiffs are disappointed in the court's ruling and are exploring their options, including an appeal."
( Last edited by NewsPoster; Nov 9, 2015 at 04:49 PM. )
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Nov 9, 2015, 09:01 AM
It's "optional" to bring bags to work? What world does this judge live in. Not paid nearly as well as judges, who can dine out at a nice restaurant, employees need some way to bring in their lunch. Often not able to afford to drive to work like a judge, they often must use mass transit. That bag is for what they read on do while riding. And not given a private office with a lock like a judge. They need at some place to keep their belongings, even if it is just a pack. All in all, this is a bit like ruling that coffee breaks and being able to go to the toilet aren't required because some employees don't need them. I might add that the best revenge for much put upon employees isn't lawsuits. This one shows how out of touch judges are. It's legislation akin to those that mandated coffee and meal breaks. Make it the law in every state that any incoming or outgoing delay over five minutes has to be done on the clock, with the employer paying.
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Nov 9, 2015, 10:38 AM
another example of why unions are still needed.
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Nov 9, 2015, 01:43 PM
With all the billions that Apple makes, it seems unnecessarily mean-spirited and greedy to do this to their employees. Maybe Apple needs to "think different."
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Nov 9, 2015, 01:53 PM
It was a stupid lawsuit to begin with. They're not working at that point, and their waiting in line is part of their break if they take a lunch break (which is too short for me anyway), so they're not supposed to be compensated. It's a stupid lawsuit and about time it's over.
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Nov 9, 2015, 04:29 PM
And.reg you make my brain hurt. If it takes 5 minutes to wait for a bag search, then that 30 minute lunch break becomes 25 minutes. The managers of the store are stealing the employee's break time and free time (at end of the work day), but the judge was too stupid to think bags aren't optional for all folks. When was the last time you saw a woman without a handbag or purse? Do you expect them to put everything they need in their pockets? Somebody poke that Judge's wife so she can slap him for the stupidity of his ruling.
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Nov 9, 2015, 06:11 PM
Employees have been steadily losing these lawsuits over unpaid security delays. So there's no penalty on companies, no incentive to make it quick. Companies might as well take their time. I expect security checks to get longer and more intrusive.

Labor laws need to be updated. A business should pay for all the time they take from an employee. Our time is worth as much to us as their unsold products are worth to them. The current situation assumes our unsold time is worthless while their unsold goods are priceless.
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