In a unanimous decision, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has reversed a trial court’s order denying class certification in a class case we brought on behalf of employees who have worked at P.F. Chang’s restaurants.
In that case, Gammella v. P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, Inc., the plaintiff claimed that P.F. Chang’s routinely sent employees home early without paying them for at least three hours of work, as required by Massachusetts law. The trial judge denied class certification, ruling that the plaintiff could not identify the members of the proposed class based on P.F. Chang’s records. We appealed, and the Supreme Judicial Court reversed the judge’s decision, ruling that the “combination of thousands of instances of nonpayment to hundreds of employees, the absence of any record keeping justifying the nonpayments, and a refusal to provide the names of the employees involved, made it reasonable to infer that the number of plaintiffs would satisfy the numerosity requirement.”