The Ninth Circuit recently dismissed California minimum wage and overtime claims in a class action brought by drilling platform worker, Brian Newton, against his former employer, Parker Drilling, following the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Parker Drilling Mgmt. Servs. v. Newton, 139 S. Ct. 1881 (2019).
In that case, the Supreme Court determined that workers on oil drilling platforms off the coast of California are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), as opposed to California’s overtime and minimum wage laws because the platforms were outside California’s territorial waters. Specifically, the Court found that workers on the Outer Continental Shelf were subject to federal law, and that California wage law should not be applied since the FLSA left no significant gap in federal law for state law to fill. Because the Ninth Circuit did not fully analyze Newton’s other state claims (including pay stub and meal break violations and penalties under California’s Private Attorneys General Act), and held that Newton should be given leave to amend his complaint, the Supreme Court remanded the case back to the Ninth Circuit for further proceedings. Consistent with the Supreme Court’s decision, the Ninth Circuit has now dismissed Newton’s California minimum wage and overtime claims, and the case has been remanded to the district court for further proceedings. You can read our full analysis of the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Parker Drilling Mgmt. Servs. v. Newton, 139 S. Ct. 1881, 204 L. Ed. 2d 165 (2019) on the Jackson Lewis publications page.