Our Firm Represents Workers in Class Actions Under the FLSA
Holding corporations accountable to the law
You may realize that you are receiving less than the minimum wage guaranteed under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), or that you were not paid for many hours of overtime work. However, pursuing a claim may seem disproportionately burdensome and expensive compared to what you have to gain, a reality that too often dissuades unfairly treated employees from obtaining justice and recovering monetary damages. Wage and hour violations are often not directed at one employee, but instead reflect a corporation-wide pattern. In this case, a collective action, also called a “class action” may be the appropriate and most effective means of reaching justice.
DeLong, Caldwell, Bridgers, Fitzpatrick, & Benjamin, LLC represents workers in employment and labor matters — with extensive emphasis on FLSA regulations and exemptions. Our firm has the resources and experience to handle complex FLSA class action litigation. Our lawyers recommend forming a class if we believe it can help you win better results in your case. We also advise you to opt out when joining a class is not in your best interests.
Benefits to plaintiffs of a class action lawsuit
Class actions often give individual claimants certain advantages that result in a higher degree of fairness in the system, such as the following:
- Streamlined process — Filings, investigation and discovery are conducted only once for the entire class, rather than repeatedly for each individual worker. Therefore, a class may reduce costs and speed up the process.
- Reduced expenses — Lawyers’ fees and legal costs are distributed across the entire class, thereby reducing the financial burden to each worker.
- Power in numbers — Whereas an employer may claim that the violation affecting one worker was an honest mistake, unpaid wages to multiple workers may indicate that the violations were intentional.
- Impact on future policies — The U.S. Department of Labor is more likely to order a corporation to change its policies if it finds a pattern of violations.
When determining whether class action is the appropriate means of pursuing your rights, we consider whether you personally will reap these typical benefits.
Certifying a class
To be certified as a class, the named employee bringing the action must “similarly situated” to other employees who may later want to join the action. According to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure Rule 23 (a), (b) The following elements must be present:
- Numerosity — The class is so that handling each case individually would be impracticable.
- Commonality — The members of the class must share common questions of law or fact.
- Typicality — The representatives’ claims or defenses are typical of those of the entire class.
- Adequacy — The representatives will fairly and adequately protect the interests of the class.
A class action can move forward if all of the elements of 23 (a) are satisfied, and if:
- Separate actions would bring inconsistent results,
- The opposing side has acted or has refused to act on grounds applicable to the entire class, or
- Common questions of law or fact that make a class action the better option.
Fight alongside your colleagues for fair wages
Find out whether filing as a class is the best way to pursue all your available remedies under the FLSA regulations. Contact DeLong, Caldwell, Bridgers, Fitzpatrick, & Benjamin, LLC by calling 470-443-0524 or contact us online to schedule your free initial telephone claims analysis. Our office has free parking available and is ADA accessible.