Entry-Level Manager Sues Amazon for MisclassificationOakland, CA
Arguments in Michael Ortiz v. Amazon.com LLC
opened in the Northern District of California on June 21, nearly five years after the California wage and hour lawsuit was initially filed. Much has already happened; the court has stripped out claims under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and denied the plaintiffs’ request to proceed as a class action lawsuit.
Syngenta Sues Insurers to Mount Defense, Pay Excess ClaimsWilmington, DE
On May 17 Syngenta, the manufacturer and distributor of paraquat-based herbicides, filed a lawsuit in the Superior Court of the State of Delaware seeking a declaratory judgment that would compel nearly 100 insurers to undertake Syngenta’s defense in the growing number of product-based personal injury lawsuits. The underlying lawsuits focus on the link between the herbicide and Parkinson’s disease, which appears with disproportionate frequency in professionals who used the product under license and according to the manufacturer’s directions. Syngenta Crop Protection, LLC v. Travelers Casualty and Surety Company
also seeks damages against insurers who, according to the company, also breached other contractual provisions. Some of these breaches allegedly occurred decades ago.
J&J Talc Plaintiffs: It Pays to PersevereWashington, DC
Twenty women who sued Johnson and Johnson, claiming its baby powder was key in their ovarian cancers, stuck to their guns: the U.S. Supreme Court won’t overturn a $2.1 billion against J&J, which was cut from a 2018 Missouri Court verdict of $4.7 billion. These women persevered through an exhaustive and harrowing court battle including the company’s last ditch appeal in March. But nine women have died from ovarian cancer since the trial began six years ago.
Ninth Circuit Reverses $102 Million Wage Penalty against WalmartSan Francisco, CA
On May 28, the Ninth Circuit reversed a decision by the Northern District of California that had required Walmart to pay $102 million in penalties for violations of the California Labor Code. The Ninth Circuit’s decision in Roderick Magadia v. Wal-Mart Associates
was a blow to thousands of Walmart workers. It may also have significant repercussions for the future of California labor lawsuits under the Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA). Ultimately, the latter may be more of a problem.
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