2nd Circuit Partially Reinstates Workers' WARN Class Suit

NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Dec. 10 partially reinstated a class complaint filed by former employees of a now-bankrupt retail chain who allege that the companies that took control of the chain following the bankruptcy violated the Worker Adjustment Retraining and Notification...

High Court Will Consider Presumption Of Prudence In ERISA Stock-Drop Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Dec. 13 agreed to review a Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling that Fifth Third Bancorp and its employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) trustees breached their fiduciary duties under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act by continuing to offer company...

High Court Denies Review Of 7th Circuit's 401(k) Class Certification Ruling

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Dec. 16 denied review of a Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling vacating denial of class certification to retirement plans' participants on their claims that the plans' fiduciaries breached their duties under the Employee Retirement Income...

Split Montana High Court Reverses Certification Of Class Question In Benefits Suit

HELENA, Mont. - A split Montana Supreme Court on Dec. 13 upheld a state court's order defining the class in a suit challenging the denial of a preauthorization request for a medical procedure but reversed and remanded with respect to the court's certification of the plaintiffs' claim as to...

Class Of Pizza Delivery Drivers Granted Certification In Minimum Wage Dispute

ST. LOUIS - A Missouri federal judge on Dec. 31 granted certification to a class of pizza delivery drivers alleging various minimum wage violations and denied their employers' motion to strike the report and testimony of the plaintiffs' expert witness (William Timothy Perrin, et al. v. Papa John's...

Calif. Correctional Officer To Proceed With Hostile Environment, Retaliation Suit

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A California federal judge in an opinion filed Dec. 30 denied a motion to dismiss the two surviving claims in a case accusing the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) of doing nothing to stop a hostile work environment and retaliating against one of the...

4th Circuit Upholds Denial Of Additional Discovery In Disability Bias Suit

RICHMOND, Va. - A Salvation Army employee who was fired for missing too much work failed to show that being given more time for discovery would in any way help her case, the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Dec. 31, upholding a trial court's denial of her discovery motion (Roberta Ahmed...

9th Circuit Certifies Questions To Calif. High Court Regarding Seats On The Job

SAN FRANCISCO - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Dec. 31, in an order addressing two cases, certified three questions concerning the proper interpretation of two California wage orders regarding an employer's obligation to provide an employee with a seat (Nykeya Kilby, et al. v. CVS...

Calif. Federal Judge Denies Motion To Remand Wage Class Suit Against Salon Chain

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Jan. 2 denied a motion to remand a class complaint accusing a salon chain of various wage violations, opining that even though the chain was overzealous with its initial amount in controversy estimates, the figure was still clearly above $5 million (Melissa...

11th Circuit Affirms Decision Compelling Arbitration In Panama

ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 8 affirmed a decision granting a ship owner's motion to compel arbitration of a crew member's claims under the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, agreeing that the dispute should be arbitrated in Panama...

Ohio Federal Magistrate Judge Orders Discovery Of Employees' Health Records

DAYTON, Ohio - Employees' health records are relevant and discoverable in a class complaint in which they accuse their employer of interfering with their rights under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), an Ohio federal magistrate judge ruled Jan. 6 (Michele Wilkinson, et al. v. Greater Dayton...

9th Circuit: Warehouse Club Properly Withheld Workers' Wages

PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 9 upheld a trial court's rejection of a class complaint accusing a membership warehouse club of federal and state wage violations when it withheld wages from employees' final paychecks (Carrie Ward, et al. v. Costco Wholesale...

Minnesota Federal Judge Conditionally Certifies Class In Donning, Doffing Suit

DULUTH, Minn. - A Minnesota federal judge on Jan. 8 conditionally certified a class of meat-processing facility workers seeking compensation for time spent working outside of their clocked hours, including donning and doffing protective gear, and denied a motion to dismiss the workers' breach of...

Study On Employment Arbitration Fairness Unreliable, 5th Circuit Says

NEW ORLEANS - Expert testimony that employers fare better than employees in arbitration of disputes was unreliable, a Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel held Jan. 8 in affirming a district court's order dismissing a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit and compelling arbitration (Samantha Diggs...

High Court Rules That Fund's Appeal Of Merits Ruling Is Untimely

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A unanimous U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 15 ruled that a federal district court's decision on the merits that left unresolved a multiemployer pension fund's request for contractual attorney fees is a final decision subject to immediate appeal under 28 U.S. Code Section 1291,...

9th Circuit Denies Review Of Certification Of Suit Against High-Tech Employers

SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 14 declined to review a federal district court's order granting class certification in an antitrust suit accusing high-tech companies of conspiring to fix and suppress employee compensation and to restrict employee mobility by entering...

7th Circuit Outlines When Class Certification Order May Be Appealed 2nd Time

CHICAGO - In order to file a second appeal from an order granting class certification when the class definition has been altered, the party appealing must actually challenge the change, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Jan. 15 (Glenn Driver, et al. v. AppleIllinois, LLC, et al., No. 13...

Nursing Assistants Denied Class Cert In Wage Dispute

HELENA, Ark. - An Arkansas federal judge on Jan. 14 denied a motion for class certification in a complaint filed by nursing assistants who allege they were denied their full pay when they were not compensated for working through their lunch breaks (Jeannie Moss, et al. v. Crestpartk Dewitt, LLC, et al...

Convenience Store Cashier Denied Class Certification In Overtime Complaint

ST. LOUIS - A Missouri federal judge on Jan. 17 denied a motion for conditional certification in an overtime complaint filed by a former convenience store clerk after determining that the clerk failed to demonstrate that she was similarly situated to any other employee (Mary Meriwether, et al. v. Beverly...

Magistrate Judge: Privacy Interest Outweighs Plaintiff's Need For Personnel Files

SAN DIEGO - A wrongful termination plaintiff's request for the personnel files of nine people who provided witness statements during a sexual harassment investigation was denied Jan. 17 by a federal magistrate judge in California, who ruled that the individuals' right to privacy outweighed the...

U.S. High Court Hears Personal Care Providers' Union Fee Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The State of Illinois is wrongfully forcing thousands of home care providers to pay compulsory fees to unions to represent their interests to the state, the attorney representing the home care providers told the U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 21 (Pamela Harris, et al. v. Pat Quinn, Governor...

Judge Adopts In Part, Modifies Recommendation Denying Spoliation Sanctions

PEORIA, Ill. - A federal judge in Illinois on Jan. 17 adopted a magistrate judge's report and recommendation to deny a plaintiff's motion for spoliation sanctions but modified the ruling to address the conduct of defense counsel during a deposition (Dorrene Sokn v. Fieldcrest Community Unit School...

Magistrate Judge Denies Plaintiff's Motion To Compel, Allows 2nd Deposition

KANSAS CITY, Kan. - A federal magistrate judge in Kansas on Jan. 21 denied an employment discrimination plaintiff's motion to compel a defendant company to conduct a more complete search for responsive documents but allowed for a second deposition of a corporate representative because pertinent documents...

Majority Of Class Suit Over Incorrect Criminal Background Check Survives Dismissal

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal magistrate judge on Jan. 17 largely rejected a motion to dismiss a class complaint filed by a California couple accusing a resident screening company of supplying an inaccurate consumer report to a prospective employer and landlord (Harold Meyer, et al. v. National...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Michigan Federal Judge Denies Discovery Motion In Retirement Benefits Tax Dispute

FLINT, Mich. - A Michigan federal judge on Sept. 11 overruled objections to a magistrate judge's order that denied a motion to compel discovery and denied a motion to compel compliance with subpoenas that were filed by a Michigan man in his class complaint accusing his former employer of violating...