• October 26, 2016

    Sterling Denied Discovery Sanctions In Sex Harassment Row

    A California judge Wednesday denied Donald Sterling’s sanctions bid against a purported ex-girlfriend pursuing an employment lawsuit claiming he made improper sexual advances while she worked for him, rejecting Sterling’s claim she lied about not being able to obtain bank records proving her employment status.

  • October 26, 2016

    SpaceX Expert Tells Jury Harassment Accuser Mentally Ill

    SpaceX on Wednesday called a forensic psychiatrist to testify in the California jury trial on a woman's claims that she was sexually harassed while welding at the aerospace company, with the expert saying the woman has textbook signs of borderline personality disorder, including "telling stories."

  • October 26, 2016

    Cornerstone Ex-CEO Tells Jury PE Fund Stole Prime Deal

    A director and former CEO of Cornerstone Health Care Group told Texas jurors Wednesday the hospital owner would have paid $45 million for a chain of rehabilitation facilities if its management team hadn’t conspired to steal away the deal for private equity fund Nautic Partners LLC.

  • October 26, 2016

    US Trustee Seeks To Chop Garden Fresh Sale's Bonus Plan

    The federal bankruptcy watchdog took aim Wednesday at the auction plan for the parent of casual dining chain Souplantation, arguing that buried in the fine print is an arrangement to pay executive bonuses without going through the normal requirements spelled out in the Bankruptcy Code.

  • October 26, 2016

    Pa. FedEx Drivers Score Conditional Cert. In OT Row

    FedEx Package System Inc. saw a narrowed class of drivers conditionally certified Wednesday in a suit alleging the company misclassified them as independent contractors rather than employees and denied them overtime in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

  • October 26, 2016

    Commodities Firm's Ex-GC Alleges 'Good Ol' Boys' Workplace

    The former general counsel of a commodity trading company accused it in a Connecticut federal court suit on Tuesday of age and sex discrimination, contending she was underpaid and that the company's all-male board fired her because she was an older woman in a "male-dominated industry."

  • October 26, 2016

    Consumer Rights Group Calls Chamber 'Prodigious Litigator'

    The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is a “prodigious litigator” that favors big business and other corporate interests over smaller ones and litigates to oppose policies by such federal agencies as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, National Labor Relations Board and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a report by a consumer advocacy group concluded Wednesday.

  • October 26, 2016

    Employment Pro Joins Ogletree Deakins As Shareholder

    Labor and employment heavyweight John Dickman has joined Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC as a shareholder after practicing at Winston and Strawn since 1992, Ogletree Deakins has announced.

  • October 26, 2016

    Blankenship Says Faulty Jury Instructions Led To Conviction

    Ex-Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship’s attorneys took aim at allegedly faulty jury instructions in appealing his conviction before the Fourth Circuit on Wednesday, saying that the directives made it too easy to conclude that Blankenship willfully violated safety rules at a West Virginia coal mine, according to media reports.

  • October 26, 2016

    Best Buy Ditches OT Claims After Judge Allows Redo

    A California federal judge on Wednesday threw out two overtime pay claims in a proposed collective action lawsuit against Best Buy upon reconsideration, now saying the retailer did not err in making overtime pay calculations.

  • October 26, 2016

    Contractor's Worker Can't Pursue Damages, Calif. Panel Says

    A California state appellate court ruled Wednesday that an employee of an independent contractor on an electrical project at a California university can’t recover damages for work-related injuries from the entity that hired the contractor.

  • October 26, 2016

    Swiss Release $51M In Venezuelan Oil Assets To US

    The Swiss government said it turned over $51 million in frozen assets owned by the Venezuelan state oil company to the U.S. government Wednesday as part of an ongoing probe into allegations of corruption at the South American operation.

  • October 26, 2016

    Yoga Guru Won’t Return To US For Deposition, Atty Says

    An attorney representing embattled yoga guru Bikram Choudhury in a former employee’s suit alleging she was fired for becoming pregnant told a California judge Wednesday his India-born client can’t be deposed in person because he “has no intention” of returning from India to the U.S.

  • October 26, 2016

    Railroad Trade Group Backs Union Pacific In $75M Tax Case

    The Association of American Railroads urged the Eighth Circuit on Tuesday to revive Union Pacific's bid for a refund of nearly $75 million worth of taxes on various stock options and union member payments to railroad employees, arguing that Congress intended for special treatment of railroads regarding the taxes at issue.

  • October 26, 2016

    Uber Drivers Push For Cert. In Safe Rides Fee Dispute

    Uber drivers asked a California federal judge on Tuesday to certify their proposed breach-of-contract class action accusing the ride-hailing giant of improperly taking a cut of their fares by instituting a “safe rides fee,” insisting that Uber’s bid to force the fight into arbitration doesn’t fly.

  • October 26, 2016

    NFL Feeder League Wants Players' FLSA Suit Nixed

    The owners of an NFL feeder league asked a New York federal judge Wednesday to throw out a putative class action by current and former players and coaches claiming they were paid sub-minimum wages, arguing their business is seasonal and exempt from federal wage laws.

  • October 26, 2016

    Pa. Judge Guts Ex-Penn State Prez's Disparagement Suit

    A disparagement suit brought by ousted Pennsylvania State University ex-President Graham Spanier over negative statements that he claims he faced in the fallout of the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal was gutted by a state judge on Tuesday in an order dismissing six of his seven counts.

  • October 26, 2016

    NLRB Urges 5th Circ. To Enforce Class-Waiver Ban For Citi

    The National Labor Relations Board on Monday asked the Fifth Circuit to enforce its order barring Citigroup from using a class action waiver in its mandatory arbitration agreement, despite acknowledging competing court precedent on the issue. 

  • October 26, 2016

    Prime Owes Hospital Workers $6.5M In Back Pay, Union Says

    Prime Healthcare Services Inc. must pay about $6.5 million for failing to give employees at two California hospitals so-called anniversary raises, a union representing the workers said Tuesday, days after the National Labor Relations Board ruled that the workers were owed back wages.

  • October 26, 2016

    Yoga Teachers Are Independent Contractors, NY Court Says

    New York’s highest court reversed a lower court’s decision in an employment dispute between the state and a Manhattan yoga studio, ruling Tuesday that the company did not exercise sufficient control over its non-staff instructors, and they were properly classified as independent contractors.

Expert Analysis

  • Lessons On Exec Bonuses From Sports Authority Bankruptcy

    Craig K. Schuenemann

    A recent, highly publicized decision from Delaware in the Sports Authority bankruptcy case provides a road map for how a debtor can keep its executives in place even though incentive payments to those executives may not be embraced by the debtor’s creditors or its former employees, says Craig Schuenemann of Bryan Cave LLP.

  • The SEC’s Aggressive Stance On Employee Agreements

    Renee Phillips

    In about a six-week span, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has fined three different companies for employee agreements that, in its view, could impede individuals from communicating with the commission. The SEC’s prioritization of this issue, combined with its incredibly expansive interpretation of its whistleblower rule, places companies at a heightened risk of scrutiny, says Renee Phillips of Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.

  • What The Media Gets Wrong About Arbitration

    Michael Fehner

    Recently, arbitration has been getting an increasingly bad rap from major media outlets. There appears to be a growing public distrust of arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism, which portends harmful consequences to the legal system as a whole, says Michael Fehner of Irell & Manella LLP.

  • When Your Client Is The President

    Peter J. Wallison

    I was given immediate responsibility for responding to the Iran-Contra crisis. My problem as a lawyer was what to do about all the requests for files, documents and other information that were coming in from investigators. Ultimately, it came down to this: What do I believe about my client? says Peter Wallison, who served as White House counsel for President Ronald Reagan.

  • Assessing New Calif. Limits On Choice-Of-Law Provisions

    John B. Lewis

    Determining exactly how arbitration-related laws will be enforced in California is always a challenge, but two new laws — Senate Bill 1241 and Senate Bill 1007 — clearly aim to limit arbitration agreements in the state, says John Lewis of BakerHostetler.

  • Considerations When Hiring Executive Branch Employees

    Christopher E. Babbitt

    The traditional exodus that accompanies the end of a presidential administration creates opportunities for the private and nonprofit sectors to recruit talented individuals with unique experience. However, without appropriate controls this process can create legal and reputational risks for prospective employers and employees alike, say attorneys at WilmerHale.

  • When Your Client Is The President

    Fred F. Fielding

    The experience of preparing for the 1981 air traffic controller strike brought home to me the responsibility a lawyer owes to his or her client — be it an average citizen, a corporation or a president, says Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP partner Fred Fielding, who served as White House counsel for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush.

  • Bridging The Gap Between Outside And Inside Counsel

    Andrew S. Chamberlin

    Results from a recent International Association of Defense Counsel survey reveal a significant disconnect between inside and outside lawyers when it comes to perceptions of their own effectiveness versus the perceptions of their counterparts on the other side of the fence, say Andrew Chamberlin, a partner at Ellis & Winters LLP, and Orlyn Lockard, associate general counsel at Siemens Corp.

  • Louisiana Supreme Court Ruling A Sweet One For Insurer

    Natasha Corb

    The Louisiana Supreme Court recently decided, in Arceneaux v. Amstar Corp., that in long latency disease cases, an insurer’s payments of defense costs may be prorated when the insurer’s occurrence-based policy was effective only during part of the plaintiffs’ exposure years. But the narrow scope of the ruling leaves its ultimate impact uncertain, says Natasha Corb of Manion Gaynor & Manning LLP.

  • Harte Decision Shows Value Of Transit Whistleblower Law

    Charles C. Goetsch

    Most employment attorneys don’t know about the National Transit Systems Security Act, which protects public transit employees who report safety hazards in their workplaces. But after a recent U.S. Department of Labor administrative decision in Harte v. New York City Transit Authority confirmed the broad scope of the NTSSA, the law should be on every employment law firm's radar, says Charles C. Goetsch of Charles Goetsch Law Offices LLC.