Lopez v. Friant & Associates, LLCAnnotate this Case
Plaintiff filed a complaint seeking civil penalties under the Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA), Lab. Code, 2698, alleging that his employer, Friant, failed to include the last four digits of its employees’ Social Security numbers or employee identification numbers on itemized wage statements, in violation of section 226(a)(7). The trial court granted Friant summary judgment, concluding a plaintiff must do more than show a violation of section 226(a), and must demonstrate that the violation was knowing and intentional. Plaintiff had submitted no evidence to contradict the statement of Friant’s accounting manager that she was not aware the last four digits of employees’ Social Security numbers were not included on employees’ pay stubs. The court declined to address Friant’s alternative argument that plaintiff failed to demonstrate he sustained actual injury as a result of the violation. The court of appeal reversed. Consistent with the PAGA statutory framework and the plain language and legislative history of section 226(e), a plaintiff seeking civil penalties under PAGA for a violation of section 226(a) does not have to satisfy the “injury” and “knowing and intentional” requirements of section 226(e)(1).