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Correy Stephenson’s Article Proves True For California – Class Action Defense Attorneys Again Face More Employment Law Class Action Cases Than Any Other Category

In an article published on July 17, 2006, Correy Stephenson – a staff writer for Lawyers USA – reports on the increase in employment law class actions, particularly under the federal FLSA (Fair Labor Standards Act). Her article and findings are certainly consistent with the court filings seen in California state and federal courts. To aid California class action defense attorneys in anticipating claims against which they may have to defend, we recently began to provide weekly, unofficial summaries of the legal categories for class actions filed in California state and federal courts in the Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose, Sacramento, San Diego, San Mateo, Oakland/Alameda and Orange County areas. Employment law cases have led the way in every report. This report covers the time period from July 14 – July 20, 2006. We include only those categories that include 10% or more of the class action filings during the relevant timeframe. Approximately 34 class action lawsuits were filed in these California state and federal courts during that time period, of which 12 involved employment law claims (more than 35%), and eight (8) of those 12 (24% of the total number of class action filings) alleged inter alia failure to pay overtime. Unfair business practice lawsuits were next, with six (6) new filings (18%), followed by five (5) antitrust class actions (15%) and four (4) securities laws class actions (12%). It may be of interest to note that almost all of the antitrust lawsuits – four of the five – were “me too” lawsuits against British Airways.

Ms. Stephenson’s article, entitled “Wage and hour suits on the rise: Employees seek payment for overtime and minimum wage,” is the article of the week for Lawyers Weekly USA, and may be found online at www.lawyersweeklyusa.com/feature.cfm.