California court: Workers must be paid for off clock tasks

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The California Supreme Court says Starbucks and other employers in the state must pay workers for minutes they routinely spend off the clock on tasks such as locking up or setting the store alarm.

The unanimous ruling on Thursday was a big victory for hourly workers in California. It came in a lawsuit by a Starbucks employee, Douglas Troester, who argued he was entitled to be paid for the time he spent closing the store after he had clocked out.

Troester says he activated the store alarm, locked the front door and walked co-workers to their cars.

A U.S. District Court rejected Troester’s lawsuit on the grounds that the time he spent on those tasks was minimal.

An attorney for Starbucks referred comment to the company. Starbucks did not immediately have comment.

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