Wage & Hour Litigation Blog

Category Archives: Misclassification/Exemptions

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The Second Circuit Finds Entry-Level Accountants To Be Exempt Learned Professionals Under the FLSA

Posted in Misclassification/Exemptions, Overtime

Authored by Gena Usenheimer

Earlier today, in Pippins v. KPMG, the Second Circuit held that entry-level accountants are professionals exempt from overtime under the FLSA.  While the Court’s finding is of great significance to employers within the accounting industry, the decision offers broad guidance as the meaning of the professional exemption generally, guidance which is applicable to employers in … Continue Reading

Sampling Duran: The California Supreme Court’s Smack Down Of A Biased Sampling Scheme Isn’t Limited To California

Posted in Misclassification/Exemptions

Co-authored by Jacob Oslick and Noah Finkel

Mark Twain famously said that “there are lies, damn lies, and statistics.”  A recent decision by the California Supreme Court provides a good example of why.  In Duran v. U.S. Bank, N.A., the Court put the kibosh on a trial court’s decision — in a wage-and-hour class action — to impose a “trial … Continue Reading

Disrespecting the Secretary’s Authority? Senate Bill Would De-Authorize Labor Department’s Ability to Set Salary Level and Primary Duty Standard under FLSA Exemptions

Posted in Misclassification/Exemptions

Authored by Alex Passantino

Earlier this week, Senator Harkin, along with eight Democrat co-sponsors, introduced the “Restoring Overtime Pay for Working Americans Act.”  If it became law—a prospect that at this time appears highly unlikely—this proposal would increase the salary level required to qualify for the FLSA’s white collar exemptions from the current $455 per week to $1,090 … Continue Reading

Supreme Court to Decide Department of Labor’s Freedom to Flip-Flop

Posted in DOL Enforcement, Misclassification/Exemptions, Overtime, Uncategorized

Authored by Barry J. Miller

On Monday, the Supreme Court accepted a petition for review two cases that may restrain administrative agencies, most notably the Department of Labor, in flip-flopping their interpretations of the law as control of those agencies passes between political parties.  The outcome of the case could hand employers a measure of certainty and stability as they … Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Finds Plaintiffs’ Use of Statistical Evidence in Class Wage and Hour Litigation Doesn’t Add Up: Why California Employers Now Have a Higher Probability of Success After Duran v. U.S. Bank

Posted in Misclassification/Exemptions

Co-authored by Geoffrey Westbrook and Laura Maechtlen

With years in the making, the long-awaited decision of the California Supreme Court in Duran v. U.S. Bank has finally arrived and represents a significant victory for California employers. Duran is the first case to consider the now prevalent use of statistical evidence by class action plaintiffs to condense class certification briefing and/or … Continue Reading

ContractorGate: Court Awards Employer Over $550,000 In Attorney’s Fees And Costs Based On DOL’s Unreasonable Litigation Position

Posted in DOL Enforcement, Independent Contractors, Misclassification/Exemptions

Co-authored by Julie G. Yap and Rachel M. Hoffer

This week, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas ordered the Department of Labor to fork over $565,527.61 in attorneys’ fees and costs to a Texas employer.  Why such a hefty fee award?  The DOL’s position that the employer misclassified gate attendants as independent contractors was not … Continue Reading

President Directs Secretary of Labor to Begin the Regulatory Process

Posted in DOL Enforcement, Misclassification/Exemptions, Salary Basis

Authored by Alex Passantino

As we expected when we reported on this yesterday, President Obama today signed a Presidential memorandum directing the Secretary of Labor to “restore the common sense principles” related to overtime.  In his remarks, President Obama focused on his belief that overtime protections have “eroded,” that “if you work more, you should be paid more,” and that … Continue Reading

Exempt No More? DOL to Propose Sweeping Changes to White Collar Exemptions

Posted in DOL Enforcement, Misclassification/Exemptions, Salary Basis

Authored by Alex Passantino

Today, the New York Times reported that the Obama Administration intends to propose comprehensive changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act’s most significant exemptions — the exemptions for executive, administrative, and professional employees.  

Although the details are still fuzzy, it appears — as we suggested last week — that the Administration will seek to raise the … Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Oral Argument in Duran v. U.S. Bank — Apparently (Sample) Size Matters:

Posted in Misclassification/Exemptions

Authored by Jim Harris

The California Supreme Court heard oral argument yesterday in Duran v. U.S. Bank, a case that gives the Justices the opportunity to answer broad questions about whether statistical evidence and or a sampling of testimony may ever be used to establish class liability in a misclassification/overtime case. (See here for our prior posting on the Continue Reading

University Goes To School On Internship Database

Posted in DOL Enforcement, Misclassification/Exemptions

Authored by Adam Smiley

This blog has often reported on the rise of unpaid internship lawsuits.  (See here and here.)  These suits have been driven by an aggressive plaintiffs’ bar that smelled opportunity based on a number of convenient facts:  many employers have an internship program, formal or informal; many interns are unpaid, or if paid work enough hours … Continue Reading