Employment & Labor Litigation

There is an increasing trend in the number of employment-related lawsuits filed against employers, whether under federal statutes such as the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, or state statutes such as the New York Labor Law (NYLL) and Connecticut Human Rights and Opportunities Act. Additionally, many municipalities are putting in place laws and ordinances that mirror and, in some cases, augment long-standing federal and state statutes. This can be seen in New York City’s Human Rights Law that, among other things, makes it easier for employees to sue employers in their individual capacities for claims of sexual discrimination in the workplace and hostile work environment. Failure to promptly and aggressively defend against these claims can lead to crippling financial consequences for small businesses, as well as personal liability for a company’s principals.

Suits under the FLSA and NYLL are becoming a scourge upon the New York City bar and restaurant industry. The FLSA establishes minimum wage, overtime pay, and record keeping requirements upon employers. It permits claims to be brought as “collective actions” wherein multiple claimants assert their claims against an employer in the same action. The NYLL adds requirements on employers above and beyond those imposed by the FLSA. As one example, the NYLL imposes a “spread of hours” premium payment on employers, which requires an employer to pay an employee that works more than 10 hours during a shift an extra hour’s pay at the minimum wage rate. NYLL claims are often brought as class actions, which can exponentially increase an employer’s liability. One of the most damaging components of the FLSA and NYLL, as well as other state and federal statutes such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, is the award of attorney’s fees to plaintiffs’ attorneys. Defending FLSA and NYLL claims in federal court is time-consuming and expensive; it becomes even more so if you have to pay the other side’s attorneys as well as your own. The attorneys at Korngut Paleudis LLC have the knowledge and experience to effectively defend against these types of lawsuits.

FLSA and NYLL claims are but one pitfall for employers. Employers – including the owners of a company in their personal capacity - can face claims for sexual harassment and/or the creation of a hostile work environment under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, or state statutes such as the New York Human Rights Law (NYLL) and Connecticut Human Rights and Opportunities Act. Discrimination claims such as these are often required to be brought in state or local agencies with jurisdiction to enforce equal employment opportunity laws (such as the New York State Division of Human Rights or New York City Commission on Human Rights) before litigation can be commenced in state or federal court. The attorneys at Korngut Paleudis LLC have experience defending discrimination claims in court and before state agencies. This experience enables us to develop the most appropriate and effective defense strategy for a state or local agency proceeding while remaining mindful of the larger litigation risks should the claims later be litigated in court.

To schedule an initial consultation with our experienced Employment & Labor Litigation attorneys, please contact us by filling out and submitting our online “Contact Us” form, by emailing mjp@paleudislaw.com, or by calling us at (212) 835-6768 or (609) 480-3080.