Class Actions Blog

Archive for the ‘Employment Class Action’ Category

Ralph’s class action waiver ruled unenforceable

Posted on: September 4th, 2013 by Steve Larson

Blog Wage and HourA National Labor Relations Board judge on Wednesday ruled that Ralph’s Grocery Co. ran afoul of federal labor law by subjecting its employees to a mandatory arbitration policy that prohibits class proceedings, in keeping with the labor board’s controversial D.R. Horton decision.

Administrative Law Judge Eleanor Laws acknowledged the grocery chain’s arguments that the NLRB lacked a quorum when it decided D.R. Horton, which held that it is a violation of federal labor law for an employer to impose as a condition of employment a mandatory arbitration agreement that precludes employees from bringing class claims in any forum. However, the judge stated that she was bound to follow the board’s ruling and that it directly applied to whether Ralph’s arbitration policy passed muster under the National Labor Relations Act. Read more…

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Ninth Circuit rejects frivolous wage and hour appeals of Nordstrom and Con-Way

Posted on: August 1st, 2013 by Steve Larson

Blog Wage and HourThe Ninth Circuit rejected “frivolous” bids Thursday from Nordstrom, Inc. and Con-Way Freight, Inc. to overturn district court denials of summary judgment to the companies in wage cases, and ordered Littler Mendelson attorneys to explain why they shouldn’t face monetary sanctions.  

The trio of orders, rejecting two petitions for mandamus on behalf of retailer Nordstrom and one from transportation and logistics company Con-Way, called out a total of six attorneys for labor and employment powerhouse Littler Mendelson and gave them 21 days to show cause as to why they should not be individually slapped with sanctions for lodging frivolous petitions.
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Chipotle overtime collective action certified

Posted on: July 19th, 2013 by Steve Larson

Blog Wage and HourA New York federal judge granted collective action certification Thursday in a lawsuit accusing Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. of misclassifying workers as overtime-exempt executives, rejecting Chipotle’s argument that the plaintiffs couldn’t identify an illegal policy or plan with classwide impact.

U.S. District Judge Andrew L. Carter Jr. signed off on an order granting a bid by former Chipotle “apprentices,” or assistant managers, Maxcimo Scott and Jay Ensor for conditional certification, giving them a green light to send notice of their lawsuit to a nationwide class — with the exception of California — of potential plaintiffs who worked as Chipotle apprentices going back three years. Read more…

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Unpaid interns are employees

Posted on: July 15th, 2013 by Steve Larson

Blog Wage and HourA Federal District Court judge in Manhattan ruled on Tuesday that Fox Searchlight Pictures had violated federal and New York minimum wage laws by not paying production interns, a case that could upend the long-held practice of the film industry and other businesses that rely heavily on unpaid internships.

In the decision, Judge William H. Pauley III ruled that Fox Searchlight should have paid two interns on the movie “Black Swan,” because they were essentially regular employees. Read more…

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Jury awards whistleblower $2.1 million

Posted on: June 18th, 2013 by Steve Larson

Whistleblower Practice AreaA Jersey City man, who had been fired by Bayonne Medical Center, has been awarded more than $2.1 million after filing a lawsuit against the hospital under New Jersey’s whistleblower law.  The whistleblower, Ceferino Doculan, was given $2 million in punitive damages, $80,000 in lost wages and $60,000 for pain and suffering.  Doculan, who had been employed by the hospital for over 20 years, was fired after informing his superiors that his direct supervisor was not qualified and did not have the proper credentials for the position.

Doculan contended that he was fired because of his protected complaint and the hospital contended he had not been, but deserved to be fired. The jury apparently didn’t agree that the predominant reason for his discharge was his performance, and found the predominant reason was his protected conduct.

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Wet Seal pays $7.5 million to settle discrimination claims

Posted on: May 13th, 2013 by Steve Larson

DiscriminationWet Seal will pay $7.5 million to settle a racial discrimination lawsuit that accused the teen retailer of firing  black employees to present a blond-and-blue-eyed front in its stores, according to the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

The firm represented plaintiffs in a national class action filed against the struggling Foothill Ranch company in July in federal court in Santa Ana.

The lawsuit alleged that former top Wet Seal executives denied equal pay and promotion opportunities to black store managers or removed them outright, replacing them with white employees. Read more…

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This blog is intended to provide information to the general public and to practitioners about developments that may impact Oregon class actions.

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  • Steve Larson

  • Steve Larson
  • Steve Larson has been representing investors, consumers and employees in class actions in Oregon for over 20 years. He is a shareholder at the law firm of Stoll Berne in Portland, Oregon.
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