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Wang v. Chinese Daily News (9th Cir. 2013)

Articles Discussing Case:

9th Circuit Taketh Away in an Amended Opinion

Shaw Valenza LLP • September 16, 2013
We posted about the Ninth Circuit's post-Wal-Mart v. Dukes decision in Wang v. Chinese Daily News here. This was an overtime class action involving newspaper employees. The Court of Appeals in the earlier opinion remanded the case to the district court for reconsideration of its class certification decision after Wal-Mart v. Dukes.

Ninth Circuit Holds that Employers Are Entitled to Individualized Damages and Affirmative Defense Determinations in Wage and Hour Class Actions

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • March 14, 2013
In Wang v. Chinese Daily News, Inc., 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 4423 (9th Cir. Mar. 4, 2013), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a decision that runs contrary to its prior endorsement of the use of inferential statistics to award damages in class actions. The court for the first time ruled that employers defending against wage and hour claims are "'entitled to individualized determinations of each employee's eligibility' for monetary relief" and entitled "to litigate any individual affirmative defenses they may have to class members' claims." The Ninth Circuit also vacated the district court's certification decision under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(b)(2) and remanded the case to the district court to consider whether the case should be certified as a class action under Rule 23(b)(3), which requires proof that common questions of law and fact predominate over questions affecting individual members. The decision will likely make it harder for plaintiffs to obtain class action certification in federal courts within the Ninth Circuit.

Significant Ninth Circuit Decision Applies Dukes to State Wage Law Class Claims

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • March 13, 2013
In Wang v. Chinese Daily News, Inc., on remand from the U.S. Supreme Court, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals applied the Supreme Court’s decision in Dukes v. Wal-Mart to reverse and remand a federal district court decision certifying a California state wage law class action. Like Dukes, Wang has had a somewhat protracted history. Following certification as an FLSA collective action, and prior to the Supreme Court’s decision in Dukes, the district court certified the plaintiffs’ state wage law claims as a class action under Rule 23(b)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) or, in the alternative, under Rule 23(b)(3). Following a 16-day jury trial, the plaintiffs were awarded over $2.5 million. The company appealed and the Ninth Circuit affirmed. On appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court post-Dukes, the Court vacated the Ninth Circuit decision and remanded for reconsideration in light of its decision in Dukes.

Ninth Circuit: Class Action Erroneously Certified Given Wal-Mart v. Dukes

Shaw Valenza LLP • March 05, 2013
Back in 2004, employees of the Chinese Daily News started a class action, claiming mis-classification, unpaid overtime and denied meals and breaks. The trial court eventually certified a class, and the employees won summary judgment on whether reporters for the newspaper qualified under the professional exemption. The employees won millions of dollars after trial, which the Ninth Circuit affirmed.