Employment Class Actions

BakerHostetler's Employment Class Actions team combines expertise and specific experience of an employment litigation boutique with the depth and resources of a national firm that handles class action matters of every size and description.

Our Employment Class Actions team handles matters in a wide variety of industries, involving numerous state and federal statutes and myriad issues. Our depth of experience includes wage-and-hour litigation, claims of sex, race, age, and disability discrimination and as claims for benefits under ERISA, Section 301 of the Labor Management Relations Act and state common law. We also litigate wage-and-hour matters extensively in California, where the Private Attorney General Act (PAGA) has encouraged a plethora of employee lawsuits and have addressed a wide range of California state law claims involving overtime, pay statements, meal and rest periods, waiting time penalties and other issues.

We believe that every class action is different. We approach every case as a unique challenge, working with the client to craft and execute strategies that address the case’s unique features and that meet the company’s broader business needs. In class action litigation, we draw on BakerHostetler's resources in electronic discovery, database construction and analysis and technical ability to interact with clients' HR and other relevant electronic systems.

We understand the array of risks clients face when confronted with employment class actions, from substantial liability to sensitive publicity and potential damage to employee relations.

Our ongoing engagement in high-stakes employment class litigation has put us on the cutting edge of evolving strategies in class action defense. Our analytic grasp of emerging issues is evident in our well-regarded Employment Class Action Blog.

While recent Supreme Court decisions in the Dukes, Comcast and American Express cases have on balance favored employers, we anticipate new challenges as the plaintiff's bar adapts and develops new strategies. We also anticipate opportunities to extrapolate from those decisions and extend them to wage-and-hour litigation.

Select Experience

Our recent employment class action litigation successes include the following:

  • We successfully opposed certification of a class of truck terminal supervisors claiming that they were misclassified as exempt for overtime purposes.
  • We tried and won a class action case involving alleged entitlement to retiree health insurance benefits following a plant closing, and defended the defense judgment on appeal.
  • We successfully represented a construction company and their subcontractors in a unique Fair Labor Standards Act and prevailing wage case in a Miami federal court. The matter received national press attention due to our strategy to move to dismiss the case for lack of jurisdiction because the defendant paid in excess of the federal minimum wage.

Professionals

Name Title Office Email
Joyce Ackerbaum Cox Partner Orlando
Eric L. Barnum Partner Atlanta
Gilbert P. Brosky Partner Cleveland
Todd A. Dawson Partner Cleveland
Bonnie Keane DelGobbo Associate Chicago
Joel C. Griswold Partner Chicago
Julie Kwun Counsel Los Angeles
John B. Lewis Partner Cleveland
Vartan S. Madoyan Associate Los Angeles
Richard S. Mandelson Partner Denver
Meagan Martin Associate Orlando
John C. McIlwee Associate Chicago
M. Scott McIntyre Partner Cincinnati
Gregory V. Mersol Partner Cleveland
Ronald S. Okada Partner Chicago
Michelle D. Pector Partner Houston
Lisa H. Pennington Partner Houston
David A. Posner Partner Cleveland
Margaret Rosenthal Partner Los Angeles
Sabrina L. Shadi Partner Los Angeles
Kevin W. Shaughnessy Partner Orlando
Melissa A. Siebert Partner Chicago
Amy J. Traub Partner New York
Jeffrey R. Vlasek Partner Cleveland
Christian R. White Counsel Philadelphia
Martin T. Wymer Partner Cleveland

Recognition

  • Chambers USA: Labor & Employment
    • Florida (2007 to 2016)
    • Ohio: Band 1 (2007 to 2016)
    • Texas (2014 to 2016)
  • The Legal 500 United States: Labor and employment: Labor and employment disputes (including collective actions): defense (2016)
  • BTI Client Service 30: BakerHostetler advanced 19 positions to #9 (2016)
  • “Best Law Firms” 2014: National Tier 1 Ranking in the area of Employment Law - Management from U.S. News – Best Lawyers®.
  • The Best Lawyers in America© 2014: Twenty-two partners were selected by their peers for inclusion in  in various employment-related fields.
  • Corporate Counsel® and The American Lawyer magazines "Go-to Law Firm” for Labor & Employment by general counsel (2013) 
  • Workforce Management Magazine: Top Employment Law Firms
  • The Lawdragon/Human Resource Executive list of the Nation's Top Employment Attorneys includes three members of the team in their Top 100 list, with one additional attorney named among the nation's top 20 labor lawyers.
  • Florida Trend's “Legal Elite"
  • Numerous partners have been certified as employment law specialists by their respective state bar associations.

News

Press Releases

Key Contacts

Blog

In The Blogs

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Employment Class Action Blog
Justices to Consider Arbitration Agreements With Class Waivers – The End of the Beginning?
January 17, 2017
Apologies to Winston Churchill,[1] but the conflict over the enforcement of arbitration agreements with class waivers has become an ongoing legal and ideological struggle. Some view individual arbitration as a quicker and less costly means...
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Employment Law Spotlight
Probationary Periods: A Window Worth Closing
January 10, 2017
Probationary periods are a tool long used to test the viability of job candidates. They can provide a window into an employee’s suitability and qualifications for a position. In an economy that continues to have high unemployment, recent...
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Employment Law Spotlight
New Year, New Minimum Wage (Orders) in New York
January 3, 2017
As most employers are likely aware, effective Dec. 31, 2016, new minimum wages went into effect in New York. The rates vary for employers, depending on size and location. For those who may have missed this change, the new minimum wages are...
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Employment Class Action Blog
Third Circuit Rejects Procedural Runarounds to Appeal Decertification of FLSA Collective Action
December 27, 2016
What’s good for the goose … We’ve written many times in this blog about the two-step procedure used by many courts in Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) cases in collective actions. The first step is to provide notice to the proposed class...
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Employment Law Spotlight
Los Angeles Joins Ban the Box Movement
December 27, 2016
Los Angeles has become the latest city to ban private employers from asking job applicants about their criminal histories before offering a job. With its , the city joins San Francisco, New York, Chicago, and about two dozen other cities...
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