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Fifth Circuit upholds “seamen” exemption and dismisses “day-rate” FLSA collective action suit.

A wave of FLSA collective (class) actions have been filed against scores of marine shipping and towing companies in the Gulf States for violation of the FLSA. Specifically, these suits claim that the commonly used “day-rate”...more

ERISA Fiduciaries Have a Duty to Inform

SUMMARY: In this case, the court found that the employer, serving as plan administrator of a group life insurance plan providing basic and supplemental coverage, may be liable for monetary damages for breach of its fiduciary...more

Flash No. 44 - 2014 … A Year In Review

2014 was uncomfortably fast. When did you last write 2013 on a check or a letter by mistake? If you did, rest assured that you are not alone. So, while we still have a few weeks before we have to face the start of a new year...more

Government action on holiday pay claims

BIS has announced this afternoon that a statutory instrument is being laid before Parliament to limit back pay in holiday pay claims to a maximum of two years. ...more

Can Offensive Personal Tweets Justify Dismissal?

Most of the case law in the UK on dismissals related to employees' social media activity has been at employment tribunal level and therefore the recent decision of the Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) in Game Retail v Laws...more

Minor League Baseball Players Take a Swing at MLB in Antitrust Suit

Several minor league baseball players have filed an antitrust class action against Major League Baseball, alleging that MLB and its teams operate as a cartel to impose restrictive contracts on minor league players. The suit,...more

Ninth Circuit Breathes Life Into Participant’s Claim for Surcharge

A panel of the Ninth Circuit withdrew its earlier opinion and has now joined other circuits in finding that the equitable remedy of surcharge is available for participants seeking recovery of personal losses as opposed to...more

Clear Sailing Ahead For Class Counsel in California Settlement

In Laffitte v. Robert Half International, Inc., No. BC321317, ___ Cal.App.4th ___ (Oct. 29, 2014; pub. ord. Nov. 21, 2014), the California Court of Appeal affirmed a $19,000,000 settlement that included an attorneys’ fee...more

Changes Coming To Colorado Discrimination Claims

On January 1, 2015, changes to Colorado’s employment anti-discrimination statute will go into effect, drastically impacting employers facing employment discrimination claims. The changes will significantly expand the remedies...more

Court Rejects Manifest Disregard Of Law Claim

A district court in Pennsylvania has denied a motion to vacate a prior arbitration award based on the arbitrator’s alleged manifest disregard of the law, and instead granted a motion to confirm the award in a case arising out...more

Fabricating Evidence and Losing Arbitration

Seagate Tech., LLC v. W. Digital Corp - Addressing an issue of whether an arbitrator inappropriately sanctioned a party that had been found to have fabricated evidence and whether the arbitrator refused to consider...more

Autozone's Predicament: A $185 Million Punitive Damage Award

The record $185 million punitive damage award by a California jury in November 2014 against AutoZone has been widely reported. This huge verdict raises immediate questions: How did this happen? What circumstances led the jury...more

50,000 Reasons for Employees to Think Twice Before Taking Their Employer's Copyright Works and Confidential Information

An ex-employee was recently ordered to pay his former employer AUD50,000 in damages after the Federal Court (Court) held that the employee had infringed copyright and breached his employment agreement and duty of...more

Employment Client Alert: Punitive Damages Award in Title VII Sexual Harassment Case Does Not Violate Due Process

In State of Arizona v. ASARCO LLC, WL 6918577, published December 10, 2014, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that an award of $300,000 in punitive damages did not violate due process even though no compensatory damages...more

Employment Law - December 2014

California Jury Awards Record $185M Verdict to Female Employee - Why it matters: A California jury made national headlines and terrified employers across the country when it awarded $185 million in punitive damages...more

Supreme Court Rejects Whistleblower’s Double-Dip Attempt

On Monday the United States Supreme Court declined to hear Danny Smart’s appeal of the Fifth Circuit’s rejection of his attempt to share in the proceeds of a $5 million settlement of a False Claims Act suit brought by another...more

EEOC Files Contempt Action Against Employer for Alleged Breach of Settlement Agreement

On December 3, 2014, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a press release announcing that it has filed a contempt action in Federal court against a Charlotte-based employer. In that action, the EEOC...more

Case Update: Workers will not Appeal Holiday Pay Overtime Ruling

We recently reported on the Employment Appeal Tribunal’s (EAT) important decision on the calculation of holiday pay. This decision established that payments in respect of “non-guaranteed overtime” must be taken into account...more

Alberta employer fined $80,000 following conveyor incident

An Alberta employer has been sentenced to a fine of $80,000 plus the 15% victim fine surcharge following a workplace incident which occurred in 2011 at its distribution center....more

Swissport Fueling to Pay $250,000 to Settle EEOC Race and National Origin Harassment Lawsuit

African Fuelers at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport Were Repeatedly Called 'Monkeys' By a Phoenix Swissport Manager, Federal Agency Charged - PHOENIX - Swissport Fueling, Inc., which fuels aircraft at Phoenix Sky Harbor...more

Huge Jury Award in Pregnancy Discrimination Case – But Will It Stick?

Causing waves to travel through the legal community, a California jury has recently ordered a woman’s former employer to pay her $186 million in punitive damages. In the case, the woman claimed that she had been demoted after...more

Shake It Off: Employer Misclassification of Exotic Dancers under the Fair Labor Standards Act

Recently, there’s been a wave of Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) rulings adverse to employers in the adult entertainment industry. Early this year, a Southern District of New York judge approved an $8 million settlement for...more

Employer Wins Dismissal of Federal Claims for Wiping Data from Terminated Employee’s Smart Phone

In one of the first reported cases of its kind, a federal district court in Texas recently dismissed federal claims brought under the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (“ECPA”) and the Consumer Fraud & Abuse Act (“CFAA”)...more

UPDATE: Unite Will Not Appeal Holiday Pay Ruling

What Has Happened? - One effect of the EAT’s judgment was to dramatically limit workers’ rights to bring Employment Tribunal claims for historic underpayments of holiday pay. It had been widely expected that Unite...more

2014 Review of the year

Sandra Wallace, Partner and UK Employment Group Head, highlights the most important legislative and case law developments from 2014 and identifies the key cases to watch out for in 2015....more

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