Lawsuit revived over Apple retail workers’ pay during bag checks

“Should Apple retail workers in California be paid for time spent having their purses, backpacks and other belongings checked to make sure they didn’t steal any of Cupertino’s goods—after they have punched out?” David Kravets writes for Ars Technica. “Ruling in a class-action lawsuit brought by Apple retail workers, a federal judge answered ‘”no’ — California law doesn’t require Apple to pay for that time, even though it’s mandatory that employees who bring purses or other bags to work get them searched while they’re off the clock.”

“The worker-wage dispute with one of the world’s richest companies didn’t end there. Lawyers for the class-action lawsuit representing thousands of Apple retail workers in California appealed that 2015 decision to the San Francisco-based 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals,” Kravets writes. “On Wednesday, the appeals court said it couldn’t come to any conclusion in a dispute that the court said had widespread ramifications for California workers who go through security checks at companies like Marshalls, Nordstrom, Federal Express, Best Buy, and other workplaces. The federal appeals court said the answer to whether California wage laws apply to time spent on security checks should be decided by the California Supreme Court.”

“In short, the suit claims that Apple retail employees spend as much as 20 minutes off the clock having their bags searched to combat employee theft every time they leave work,” Kravets writes. “Apple claims that the searches only take seconds and that they are not ‘required’ for workers who don’t bring purses, backpacks, briefcases, or other bags to work.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote back in June 2015, “Unfortunately, policies like this do not arise out of the blue. There is a reason why bag checks have to be conducted. Ah, if only we lived in a world where everyone was taught, and learned, right from wrong and lived moral lives. That said, there must be a way to conduct these bag checks out of view of customers and as quickly as possible. Apple would do well to remember that the vast majority of these bag checks are being conducted on loyal employees who are not thieves.”

Tim Cook received multiple complaints on Apple’s bag check policy – June 11, 2015
Judge dismisses Apple Store employee ‘bag check’ lawsuits following Supreme Court ruling – December 31, 2014
Apple Retail Store employee files class action lawsuit over lost wages due to bag searches – October 12, 2013
Apple retail workers file class action suit claiming lost wages over bag searches – July 29, 2013


    1. Right. There’s only two possibilities here:
      1. The amount extra Apple would have to pay is so low that it is insulting not to pay it.
      2. The amount is enough that Apple is robbing its employees of a significant amount of pay they deserve.

      Either way, Apple is disrespecting its employees.

  1. I worked Apple Retail before this policy. I worked prior to and after the point where orders are called to the back and brought forth by inventory people in the back. In the older days when as a specialist on the floor, we would travel to the back and pull our own orders from inventory. Whatever it was, computers, printers, accessories, etc…
    During this time one of my coworkers it was found out would fake sales. Speak with someone. Go to the back. Pull out a MacBook Pro, free back to school student printer (those days), and maybe some accessories like headphones or something else. He would ring up the sale on his portable device, or at least appear to. Reprint a previous sales receipt, hand over the items to a friend undercover as a customer, and send him on his way. Made off with over $50,000 worth of products before he was caught and fired.
    Of course there are vastly better systems and checks in place now so that kind of fraud doesn’t happen now.

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