I spent the morning reviewing the case file in the Dunbar matter. I looked at both side's briefing, much of the documentary evidence sumbitted in support (in total it approaches 1000 pages--I looked at key pieces), the trial court's order, and took a new look at the Court of Appeal's opinion in light of that.
I was impressed by the quality of the Defendant's work. They were thorough, to put it lightly. They dissected the managers' job duties and clearly showed how they varied from place to place. They also blew some pretty large holes in the Plaintiff's categorization of the job duties.
In sum, the Defendants were able to frame the issue their way, and took the judge with them. Having said all of that, I personally have used just about every argument they tried (admittedly, without nearly as much support in the papers) and had my opposition overruled. I don't think there is anything about this case that changed the law.
Sav-On was, and I believe always has been, about trial court discretion. To the extent that judges saw it as merely a "pro-certification" decision, there is a chance that Dunbar will cool that off, and reassert the narrower nature of it. Anyway, we'll see what subsequent events hold in this case.
If any of my readers out there see a difference between this and other recent class-action certification cases, please let me know. It's quite possible I missed it.