Class Counsel Blog

Showing 4 posts in Ohio.

Southern District of Ohio Rejects Attempt to Moot Putative Class Action By Using a Rule 68 Offer of Judgment.

The Southern District of Ohio recently weighed in on a currently contentious class
action issue: whether a Rule 68 Offer of Judgment made to the named plaintiff
in a putative class action, prior to the filing of a motion for certification,
makes the entire case moot and non-justiciable.  In a departure from the recent trend within the Sixth Circuit, the court concluded that such an offer does not moot the case. Read More ›

Court Rules Ohio Constitution’s Minimum Wage Provision Creates Vehicle for Rule 23 Class-Action Lawsuits, Opt-In Not Required

In Brenneman v. Cincinnati Bengals, Inc., No. 1:14-CV-136, 2014 WL 5448864 (S.D. Ohio Oct. 24, 2014), the Plaintiff, a former Cincinnati Bengals cheerleader, filed a class and collective action alleging the Bengals paid her less than the minimum wage. She asserted claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), Article II § 34a of the Ohio Constitution known as the Ohio Fair Minimum Wage Amendment, and the Ohio Minimum Fair Wage Standards Act, Ohio Rev. Code 4111.14. Plaintiff filed her Ohio law claims as a class action under Federal Rule 23.  The Bengals moved to dismiss the Constitutional claim, arguing that the Plaintiff could not proceed directly under the Constitution but had to proceed under the implementing legislation, R.C. 4111.14. The Bengals also moved to dismiss the Rule 23 class claims because the implementing provision of the Minimum Wage Amendment provided for only opt-in collective actions for minimum wage violations.  The Court denied the Bengals’ motion to dismiss, effectively concluding that Ohio law permits employees alleging minimum wage violations to proceed with an opt-in collective action under the statute or an opt-out class action under the Constitution. Read More ›

New York state trial court rejects federal Wal-mart and Behrend standards for class certification; awards partial summary judgment to wage & hour plaintiffs

Cardona v. Maramont Corp. (NY/Supr. Ct. New York County 6/6/2014) entered partial summary judgment for a class of employee-plaintiffs based upon the employer’s failure to keep records of the time that employees spent working under publicly-financed food service contracts. In so doing, the Court considered and rejected application of “rigorous analysis” standards for evaluating class certification. Read More ›

The Employment Class and Collective Action Landscape After Wal-Mart v. Dukes

The Supreme Court’s decision in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, 131 S. Ct. 2541 (2011), has been hailed as one of the most significant class action decisions in years.  The case significantly strengthened the requirements for lawsuits to proceed as class actions under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23.  Almost three years after the Supreme Court issued its opinion, courts and litigators are still grappling with the implications of the case, particularly in employment class and collective actions.  Nevertheless, some clear patterns have emerged in the lower courts. When interpreting the commonality requirement in Rule 23 class actions, lower courts have paid particular attention to the size of the class and the degree the action involves common or companywide policies with limited individual discretion, whether the allegedly discriminatory policy is determined by many lower level managers or uniformly enacted by upper level executives.  Additionally, courts have often found Dukes inapplicable in Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) collective actions, but have applied Dukes to hybrid class and collective actions. Read More ›

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Attorney Spotlight

Stephen E. Embry is a member of the Firm's class action, privacy and mass tort groups. He frequently defends participants in consumer class actions and mass tort litigation. Stephen is a national litigator and advisor who is experienced in developing solutions to complex litigation and corporate problems.