News & Analysis as of

Legal Briefs: A Periodic Summary of Judicial Decisions Affecting Accounting and Financial Services Professionals - October 2014

The New Jersey District Court recently ruled that an economic damages expert retained by plaintiffs’ counsel in a class action was not entitled to any further compensation for his work. The facts in Rothstein v. Harstad...more

Third Circuit: Federal Court Should Decide Whether An Arbitration Clause Authorizes Classwide Arbitration – Not The Arbitrator

The Third Circuit recently was presented with the question of whether, in the context of an otherwise silent contract, the availability of classwide arbitration is to be decided by a court rather than an arbitrator. The...more

Your Collective Action Waiver May Not Survive in a Vacuum: 6th Circuit Says Arbitration Was Key to Enforcing Waiver of FLSA Claims

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recently noted in Killion et al. v. KeHE Distrib., LLC, Nos. 13-3357/4340 (6th Cir. Jul. 30, 2014) that it was the first appellate court to tackle head on the question of whether a...more

Is a FLSA Collective Action Waiver by Itself in a Severance Agreement Enforceable? Sixth Circuit Says “No.”

Employers have recently enjoyed some victories in the U.S. Supreme Court and in the California Supreme Court regarding the use of class/collective action waivers in employment arbitration agreements (e.g. Italian Colors and...more

Coerced Arbitration Agreement Not Enforceable in FLSA Collective Action

The Eleventh Circuit has affirmed a district court's decision denying an employer's motion to compel the arbitration of a Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) collective action, finding that the court's decision was within its...more

Sixth Circuit Refuses to Uphold Collective Action Waiver Absent Arbitration

My working title for this blog was “collective action grab bag,” concerning the recent Sixth Circuit case in Killion v. KeHE Distributors, LLC, Case Nos. 12-3357/4340 (6th Cir. July 31, 2014). I went with the title that...more

Third Circuit Holds that Courts, Not Arbitrators, Should Rule on Classwide Arbitration

In Opalinski v. Robert Half International, Inc., the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit held that where an arbitration clause is silent as to the availability of classwide arbitration, that issue should...more

Executive Order May Block Contractors with Labor Violations from Receiving Federal Contracts

On July 31, 2014, President Obama signed the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order (“Executive Order”) that requires contractors to (1) disclose recent violations of various workplace laws before being awarded federal...more

U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Petition that Proceeding as a Collective Action Under the FLSA is a Non-Waivable Substantive...

In the last week, we have seen several significant decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court. On Monday, however, the Court made a noteworthy “non-decision” by declining a petition for certiorari that raised the question of...more

Employment Law - June 2014 #3

Employers Win, Lose in Latest California Supreme Court Opinion on Arbitration - Why it matters: The California Supreme Court continued its complicated relationship with employment agreements and arbitration on June 23...more

Tips to Help Avoid Class Action Litigation

Taking advantage of recent case law developments can assist financial institution employers in avoiding and/or minimizing their exposure to class and collective action litigation. For example, courts have become increasingly...more

Arbitration Clauses Survive Their Contracts 99% Of The Time

The Sixth Circuit recently answered a question I get asked regularly: does an arbitration clause survive the termination of the contract containing it? I usually say yes, and thankfully the Sixth Circuit backed me up....more

Employer’s Attempt To Avoid Ongoing Collective Action By Forcing Potential Plaintiffs To Sign Arbitration Agreements Fails

In the past year, if I wrote about “FLSA” and “arbitration” in the same post, it likely meant that another federal court had found employers can include class action waivers in their employment contracts without violating the...more

Eleventh Circuit Upholds Enforceability Of Class Action Waiver

Executive Summary: The Eleventh Circuit recently held that an arbitration agreement that waives an employee's ability to bring a collective action under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is enforceable under the Federal...more

Employment Flash - February 2014

In This Issue: - US Supreme Court Rules on Donning and Doffing Issue - NLRB Judge Invalidates Arbitration Agreement Without Class Action Waiver - Second Circuit Rules on Single Employer Liability Under the WARN...more

Another Win for FLSA Class Action Waiver

In Porreca v. Rose Group, No. 13-1674 (E.D. Penn. Dec. 11, 2013), an employee attempted to bring class claims for violations of the wage and hour provisions of the FLSA against its restaurant employer in federal court. The...more

How to Draft Enforceable Class Action and Other Employer-Friendly Waivers

Porreca v. The Rose Group was a class action lawsuit brought by Carly Porreca and Charles Walton, alleging that their employer, Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill and Bar, had violated the Fair Labor Standards Act. After Porreca...more

Fifth Circuit Overturns NLRB Decision on Class and Collective Action Waivers

On December 3, the Fifth Circuit set aside the National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB” or “Board”) ruling that the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) prohibits employers from including class or collective action waivers...more

Arbitration Agreement Awarding Fees To Prevailing Party In FLSA Case Held Not Enforceable By Florida’s Second DCA

Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal recently held that an arbitration agreement was unenforceable in the context of a claim brought under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) when the agreement provides for an...more

Anachronism Revealed: FINRA Rules Trump Italian Colors to Give Registered Members Their Day in Court

It is rare these days for a court to deny a motion to compel arbitration. It is especially surprising to find such a decision where the parties are subject to an arbitration agreement. Using the fundamental principle...more

Ninth Circuit Joins Second and Eighth Circuits in Rejecting D.R. Horton

Recently, in Richards v. Ernst & Young, No. 11-17530, 2013 WL 4437601 (9th Cir. August 21, 2013), the Ninth Circuit joined two other federal circuits, the Second and the Eighth, in rejecting the application of the National...more

Class Action Waivers Gain Momentum as More Courts Reject NLRB Ban on Waivers

Given a recent uptick in court rulings enforcing class action waivers, it may be time to revisit whether your company prefers to resolve disputes with employees in court or through arbitration. Class action waivers in...more

Second Circuit Holds That The Fair Labor Standards Act Does Not Bar The Enforcement of Class Action Waivers

Over the past week, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (“Second Circuit”) has issued two decisions in which it affirmatively held that: (i) a plaintiff cannot use the “effective vindication doctrine” to...more

Supreme Court’s Recent American Express Decision has Far Reaching Implications for Businesses Seeking to Avoid Being Sued in a...

Businesses often use arbitration agreements as a tool to lessen the burden and cost of future litigation. On June 20, 2013, the Supreme Court released its opinion in American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant, 570 U....more

Class Action Litigation -- Helping your business avoid or minimize the risk of exposure

A couple of novel tools are becoming increasingly available under Washington state and federal law, enabling businesses to reduce exposure to class and/or collective action litigation. Specifically, courts are more likely to...more

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