Ogletree Deakins • July 15, 2019
Last month, in Barbee v. Big River Steel, LLC, No. 18-2255 (June 20, 2019), the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit held that an independent agreement for attorneys’ fees in connection with a Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) settlement does not require court approval—without intimating any position on the current circuit split as to whether FLSA settlements in general require judicial approval. As stated by the court, under the express language of the FLSA, 29 U.S.C. § 216(b), attorneys’ fees are allowed “in addition to any judgment awarded,” such that the merits of an FLSA claim and the attorneys’ fees are distinct.
Brody and Associates, LLC • July 05, 2019
$3.8 Million dollars. That’s what the City of Tucson was ordered to pay a firefighter because they failed to provide adequate space for her to pump milk at work. As we have previously written, New York City laws requiring a lactation room and lactation accommodation policy recently took effect. The Tucson case is a good reminder failure to comply with the law can be quite costly for employers. It can also cause bad publicity.
JP Morgan Chase Bank has reached a proposed agreement to settle claims that its paid parental leave policy discriminated against fathers. Chase will pay $5 million in the ACLU-led class action to male employees who allege that from 2011 to 2017 they were unlawfully denied paid parental leave on the same terms as mothers. The proposed agreement must still be approved by the court.
Brody and Associates, LLC • May 07, 2019
As we previously wrote, an Applebee’s Neighborhood Bar & Grill franchisee recently reached a five figure settlement with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal watch dog responsible for enforcing federal anti-discrimination employment laws, in South Carolina. It seems Applebee’s remains a target for the EEOC. In late October, Apple-Metro, Inc. and Hawthorne Apple, LLC, which are franchisees of Applebee’s in New York settled a sex harassment lawsuit with the EEOC for $100,000.
Fisher Phillips • March 20, 2019
Last week, we shared with you the news of Uber’s proposed $20 million settlement to resolve a long-running misclassification claim – the parties agreed to the deal, and they just needed the approval of a federal court judge (read the entire post here). Of course, nothing is finalized until it’s signed, and the parties to this particular claim know that all too well; after all, they thought they had a $100 million settlement in place in April 2016 before the same judge nixed the proposed deal as not being “fair, adequate, and reasonable” to the class of drivers. This week, that judge signaled there could be another fly in the ointment, and its name is Dynamex.
Fisher Phillips • March 13, 2019
When the news broke today that Uber had agreed to pay a group of drivers $20 million to settle a long-running misclassification claim, you could be forgiven for thinking that the deal sounded like a massive blow to the gig economy giant. After all, $20 million is a substantial sum – no matter how large a company is – and in most cases would be an indication that the paying party had given in to the exorbitant demands of the claimants. But this settlement is different. It resolves a claim that Uber had originally agreed to settle for $100 million – five times the amount of the final total. How did Uber get such a bargain?
XpertHR • February 21, 2019
A jury has awarded a former KFC worker $1.5 million in punitive damages for discriminatory actions by supervisors that were designed to hinder the employee's ability to express breast milk at work. The employee claimed that her supervisors' and coworkers' behavior was so severe it caused her milk supply to dry up, making it impossible for her to continue to breastfeed her child.
Jackson Lewis P.C. • February 15, 2019
Plaintiffs Megan Meadowcroft and Amanda Brown, two winery employees, alleged that they had been harassed on numerous occasions by their supervisor, General Manager Pinero. Specifically, Brown alleged that Pinero attempted to flirt with her, and physically made contact with her. Meadowcroft alleged that Pinero made sexually explicit gestures, sexually explicit comments, put his hands on her waist and under her buttocks as she was serving customers, and on at least one occasion told her that she could be a manager if she would have sex with him. Along with a claim of harassment, they filed claims of retaliation, failure to prevent harassment/retaliation, and negligent supervision, retention, and hiring.
Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 31, 2019
Following a five-day trial, and nine hours of deliberation, a federal jury in Pennsylvania has awarded more than $6 million to a former Teva Pharmaceuticals employee. Middlebrooks v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., No. 2:17-cv-00412 (E.D. Pa. Nov. 19, 2018). The employee claimed that the company discriminated against him on the basis of his age in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) and on the basis of his national origin in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and retaliated against him for lodging internal complaints.
Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 31, 2019
A class of flight attendants in a case involving alleged violations of California’s wage and hour laws was awarded $77 million in damages. In so doing, the judge rejected the airline’s challenges to the plaintiff’s damages model and reduced the damages requested by the workers by only $8 million. Bernstein et al. v. Virgin America Inc., No. 3:15-cv-02277 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 16, 2019).