News & Analysis as of

Magistrate Permits Defendants to Depose 196 Absent Class Members

In a class action involving claims of uncompensated, pre-shift off-the-clock work, a California federal magistrate denied plaintiffs’ motion for a protective order to prevent defendants from taking 196 depositions of absent...more

Court Grants Motion to Strike Class Allegations

In granting a recent motion to strike class allegations, the Northern District of Illinois made two notable observations about such motions: first, they are not disfavored, but rather an appropriate device for determining...more

California’s Second and Fourth Appellate Districts Split Over Who Should Decide Whether Agreement Authorizes Class Arbitration –...

In Network Capital Funding Corporation v. Papke, G049172, 2014 WL 5035099 (Cal. Ct. App. Oct. 9, 2014), the California Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District declined to follow the reasoning of the Second Appellate...more

California District Court Finds Bankrupt Named Plaintiffs Not Adequate Representatives

Anyone questioning whether the Supreme Court’s decision in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, 131 S. Ct. 2541 (2011), has had an impact need look no further than the decision in Alakozai v. Chase Investment Services Corp., Case...more

Quirky Question #242 – Policing Break and Time Records Pays Off

Quirky Question - We are a California employer. After all the publicity surrounding class actions over meal and break periods, we instituted automatic warnings if employees take too long or too short a meal or rest...more

Resource Update: Innovative Strategies for Defending Against the Rising Tide of Wage and Hour Class and Collective Action Claims

Over the last decade, employers increasingly have been bombarded with wage and hour lawsuits filed by current and former employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and various state law equivalents. Though no...more

Employment Law Summer Recap 2014: Part 8 of 11 – New York’s Coldest Summer, Especially for Employers Who Utilized Unpaid Interns

It felt like we were in a dream. Or maybe San Diego. Day after day, 82 degrees and little humidity. In a word: pleasant. We know next summer probably won’t be the same, but we sure enjoyed this one. That’s right – this was...more

Minnesota District Court Rejects Nationwide Scope and Conditionally Certifies Class of One Chipotle Store

Employees win most motions for conditional certification under the FLSA, with many courts declining to perform a probing analysis at that stage. A recent case from the District of Minnesota, in which the court still applied a...more

Third Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Class Allegations for Vague Pleading

Whenever I see the names of the Iqbal and Twombly pleading cases, I can’t help but feel that the names were clipped from lost lines of Lewis Carroll’s Jabberwocky poem, perhaps as something similar to “Iqbal were the Civil...more

Despite Wal-Mart Stores v. Dukes, Ninth Circuit approves statistical sampling to prove that an “unofficial” common policy exists

There seem to be two prevailing conceptions of class actions. In one view, a class action is a way of determining many similar claims at once by evaluating common evidence that reliably establishes liability (and lays a...more

Washington Supreme Court Decision May Spur Joint Employer Class Actions

In a matter of first impression, the Washington Supreme Court has held that the "joint employer doctrine" is a viable theory under Washington's Minimum Wage Act (WMWA), and adopted the Fair Labor Standards Act's economic...more

August 2014 Monthly Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification Update

This month’s headline development are the seismic decisions, issued on August 27, 2014 by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, concluding as a matter of law that FedEx Ground had misclassified over 2,300 drivers...more

Worker-Classification Lawsuit Claims Drivers Are Employees, Not Independent Contractors

A class-action suit recently filed in Massachusetts against an on-demand car service alleges the company misclassified its drivers as independent contractors instead of employees. As a result, according to the complaint, the...more

Apple the Subject of a Class Action Lawsuit About Break Periods

A California state court granted class action status to a case with claims alleging that Apple failed to give its employees sufficient breaks for meals and rests, occasionally disallowing breaks completely. Nearly 21,000...more

Out of the Box: Legal guidance for the consumer product + retail industry - Volume 2, Issue 2, Summer 2014

In This Issue: - Are Offers Of Free Credit Monitoring About To Become Mandatory In Data Breach Incidents? - Mandatory “Made-In” Labeling in the EU - A New Dawn for California Class Actions - Recent...more

Court "Certifies" Gawker Media Interns' Collective Action

After more than a year of litigation (the filing of which we reported at the time), former unpaid Gawker Media interns will be permitted to send notices to other unpaid or allegedly underpaid interns to inform those potential...more

New York District Court Conditionally Certifies Class of Interns

In Mark v. Gawker Media LLC, Case No. 13-cv-4347(AJN) (S.D. N.Y. Aug. 15, 2014), Gawker became the subject of yet another in a line of cases involving unpaid interns. Four interns brought suit under the FLSA, contending that...more

Got Proof? Court Requires Proof Employees Signed Arbitration Agreement to Compel Arbitration

Arbitration agreements, and their use as a means to avoid class action disputes in particular, have been repeat news items in the last several years, and many employers continue to consider their use as a means to mitigate...more

Court Rejects Pseudo-Expert Reports and Refuses to Certify Off-the-Clock Case

Off-the-clock cases involving call centers have been in vogue for a number of years despite lingering issues regarding whether they can truly be resolved on a class-wide basis. A recent case from the District of Maryland,...more

Do as I Say, Not as I Do: Even the Government Falls Victim to Wage and Hour Violations Sometimes

Remember last fall when all we could talk about was the government shutdown? The 16-day government shutdown captured the attention of a nation once again gripped by seemingly-manufactured political crisis. Last week, two...more

FLSA Collective Action Waivers In Separation Agreements May Not Be Valid In 6th Circuit

Employees discharged as part of a company restructuring can participate in a collective action lawsuit for unpaid overtime wages under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) despite waiving their collective action rights in...more

California Supreme Court Clarifies Commissioned Employee Exemption

Peabody v Time Warner Cable, Inc. (July 14, 2014, No. S204804) 2014 Cal Lexis 4755, came to the California Supreme Court from the Ninth Circuit, through a certification procedure that is used when a question can determine the...more

NLRB Rules Bergdorf Shoe Sellers Are Mismatched for Micro-Bargaining Unit

In a long-awaited decision, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) unanimously held that women’s shoe sales associates from two different departments within Bergdorf Goodman’s New York store could not be combined into a...more

Which of These Things Is Not Like the Other? NLRB Finds Micro-Unit of Shoe Sales Associates Not Appropriate

On Monday, a unanimous National Labor Relations Board dismissed a union petition seeking to represent 46 shoe sales associates at a Bergdorf Goodman store in New York. This decision comes on the heels of the NLRB’s ruling...more

Avoid Apple’s Legal Headaches Over Final Paychecks

In the recently certified class action against Apple for wage and hour law violations, one of the plaintiffs’ allegations is that employees who quit or were dismissed weren’t given final paychecks in a timely manner as...more

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