- Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
- Area(s) of Law: Employment Law
- Date Filed: 11-04-2022
- Case #: 20-56245
- Judge(s)/Court Below: Berzon, J.; Rawlinson, J.; & Kennelly, D.J.
- Full Text Opinion
Ray appealed from summary judgment in this action for unpaid overtime, holding the County was not Ray’s employer under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). The Court addressed and upheld rulings on two other summary judgment issues as well. On appeal, Ray argued Bonnette v. Cal. Health & Welfare Agency, 704 F.2d 1465 (9th Cir. 1983) dispositively held California counties to be employers of in-home social service (“IHSS”) providers. In response, the County argued the IHSS program today is substantially different than it was in Bonnette, and specifically that because the County no longer pays IHSS providers, it does not employ them. Under Bonnette, an entity is a joint employer if the entity “(1) had the power to hire and fire  employees, (2) supervised and controlled employee work schedules or conditions of employment, (3) determined the rate and method of payment, and (4) maintained employment records. The Court noted the FLSA’s broad definition of employee and employer and that the Act allows for more than one employer per employee. Applying Bonnette, the Court found that the County exercised substantial economic and structural control over the IHSS providers, contributed significant amounts of money to their wages, and held power over wage rates, negotiations, and payment methods. As a result, the Court held the County was Ray’s employer, jointly with the State and IHSS recipients. AFFIRMED IN PART, REVERSED IN PART, AND REMANDED.