Employment, Labor & Benefits

Wage & Hour

Class action cases can be very costly for your business if it is found liable. Our attorneys have successfully defended hundreds of employers in lawsuits of all sizes, including those filed by individual employees as well as class actions and collective actions, and alleging violations of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act or state laws.

Unlike a typical lawsuit, a lawsuit involving wage and hour issues requires the employer to disprove the employee’s claims. Wage and hour audits can limit your liability. Our attorneys can help you comply with applicable laws and avoid these claims. If you do experience a legal challenge — especially one that develops into class action litigation — our experienced team will be by your side to help you achieve a successful outcome. In the meantime, we can review your pay practices to help reduce your risk of a successful claim.

Quick Facts

  • Dedicated team in all offices with substantial experience defending wage and hour claims
  • Backed by 100+ litigators and paraprofessionals
  • Experience across a wide range of industries
  • Accomplished litigators who specialize in class actions, collective actions, and wage and hour laws
  • Extensive trial experience in state and federal courts

Areas of Focus

  • Advise and counsel clients on all aspects of wage and hour law, including:
    • Classification and other exemption issues
    • Appropriate use of and payment practices for independent contractors
    • Timekeeping and recordkeeping practices
    • Overtime pay practices
    • Determining whether compensation is excluded from coverage
    • Wage payment practices, including timing of payments to exempt and non-exempt employees and timing of final paychecks following a termination event
    • Performing wage and hour audits to ensure compliance with applicable laws

  • Defend clients against claims brought under federal and state wage and hour laws, including:
    • Exempt vs. non-exempt misclassification
    • Independent contractor misclassification
    • Off-the-clock, on-call, and waiting time
    • Failure to pay all wages when due
    • Failure to appropriately calculate and pay overtime

  • Represent clients in wage and hour investigations undertaken by the DOL and state agencies
Case Study: Norceide, et al. v. Cambridge Health Alliance

Represented a large health care system in a wage and hour class action involving claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Massachusetts Wage Payment Act. The plaintiffs, on behalf of themselves and a putative class of over 3,000 employees, claim that they were required to work through unpaid meal breaks and before and after their scheduled shifts without additional pay, in violation of state and federal law. After two years of discovery and a series of complex motions, and on the eve of trial, we received a decision from the court decertifying the FLSA collective action class and foreclosing the plaintiffs' ability to resurrect any state law class action claims under Rule 23. The plaintiff pool was reduced to only the five named plaintiffs, and the case settled for a nominal amount shortly thereafter.

Case Study: Severin v. Project OHR, Inc.

Represented Project OHR, a nonprofit provider of home attendants, in two hybrid class and collective actions relating to issues stemming from overtime exemptions for certain domestic employees under federal and state law. We defeated both a motion to authorize a collective action notice and a subsequent motion to certify a class on a separate issue. After we defeated the collective and class motions in the Severin matter, both the plaintiffs in that case and the plaintiff in the second case (Schabowska) settled with Project OHR on terms favorable to the company.

Case Study: Chan Hee Yi, et al. v. Micro Dental Laboratories, Robert Starr, and Alonzo Marin

Represented Micro Dental Laboratories in a wage and hour class action. After receiving discovery responses, we determined that opposing counsel and the plaintiff did not have the facts to support the overtime allegations that formed the basis for the class claims. We used the plaintiff’s discovery responses and unsupported allegations to leverage a dismissal of all class action claims against our client. The company settled the plaintiff’s personal claims for a nominal amount that was significantly less than the damages the plaintiff was seeking.

Case Studies: International Diagnostics Company, Matter 1 and Matter 2

Represented a publicly traded diagnostics company in two hybrid collective and class actions alleging failure to pay overtime and training time to field technicians. The plaintiffs brought their claims under the applicable provisions of the FLSA in Matter 1 and both the FLSA and the New York Labor Law in Matter 2. In a strategic step designed to moot any further pursuit of the collective and class actions, we served offers of judgment on the plaintiffs. The offers were accepted and resulted in dismissal of the actions.

Representative Experience

  • Represented Nanni Restaurant in connection with a wage and hour investigation.
  • Currently serve as counsel for AYS Staffing in connection with a putative class action pending in the Supreme Court for the State of New York, County of Suffolk, for alleged violations of the New York Tip Statute. The class action is based on a claim that the defendants illegally withheld tips from a class of service employees.
  • Represented Arbella Insurance Co. in a class action alleging that Arbella violated the FLSA in connection with its compensation of its auto damages appraisers.
  • On behalf of a global real estate services provider, devised strategy that led to dismissal of wage and hour class action before the class was certified and before any briefing or discovery took place with respect to class certification.
  • Represented Fidelis Health Care, Inc. in connection with a hybrid collective and class action for FLSA (failure to pay overtime) and New York Labor Law (wage law violations) claims.
  • Represented an international financial services company in connection with a hybrid collective action and class action alleging that the employer misclassified and failed to pay overtime to executive assistants. The plaintiff asserted her claims under the FLSA and New York wage and hour laws.
  • Defended Aegis Defense Services in a class action brought on behalf of a putative class of several hundred employees working as security guards and in related positions at the US Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan.
  • Represented a limousine company in a class action alleging violations of Massachusetts overtime and minimum wage laws for failing to pay an alleged class of drivers for all time worked and at the applicable overtime rate.
  • Represented Oxford Bioscience Partners in its $20 million Series C financing of Glori Energy, a leader in sustainable, enhanced oil recovery and provider of the AERO (Activated Environment for Recovery of Oil) System.
  • Represented FloDesign Sonics, an acoustic separation and filtration company, in its $10 million Series A financing led by Bright Capital.
  • Defended a publicly held medical supply manufacturer in a series of FLSA actions (individual and collective). Successfully negotiated notice, achieving an opt-in rate of only 8%.
  • On behalf of the world’s leading provider of HR solutions, obtained dismissal of plaintiffs’ overtime claims in wage and hour lawsuit alleging nonpayment of overtime and training time wages to temporary pickup and delivery drivers who claimed joint employment by temporary staffing agency and logistics services company.