Be Careful What You Blog For

Shavitz Law Group

Last week, a New York federal judge on Friday tossed out a class action brought by volunteer Huffington Post bloggers seeking compensation for their work. The reason? Bloggers knew they were not getting paid from the start.

After the Huffington Post was sold to AOL, bloggers were upset that the publication’s celebrity founder Arianna Huffington profited greatly from the same of the publication, but the bloggers themselves received no pay for building the site for Huffington.

“That the defendants ultimately profited more than the plaintiffs might have expected does not give the plaintiffs a right to change retroactively their clear, up-front agreement,” Judge Koeltl wrote in the opinion. “That is an effort to change the rules of the game after the game has been played, and equity and good conscience require no such result.”

“The [bloggers] knew that they were not going to be compensated, and there was no materially misleading statement as to that essential fact,” the judge wrote. “Rather, the [bloggers] were explicitly made aware that they would receive exposure … in lieu of monies.”

E-Trade To Pay $1.5M To Settle OT Suit

Shavitz Law Group

Law 360 – February 23, 2012. E-Trade Financial Corp. agreed Thursday to pay $1.5 million to settle with a proposed class of relationship managers who had accused the financial services giant of denying them overtime pay in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

AmTrust Unit Settles Ex-Banker’s FLSA Suit

Shavitz Law Group

Law 360 – July 19, 2011
A Florida federal judge on Tuesday approved a settlement to end a proposed overtime collective action brought by a former personal banker at AmTrust Bank Investment Services Inc., a unit of the now-bankrupt AmTrust Bank. 

Despite Backlash, Florida To Remain FLSA Hotbed

Shavitz Law Group

Law 360 – November 18, 2009
A concentration of low-wage workers, midsize businesses and vigorous plaintiffs firms has made Florida a favorite spot for Fair Labor Standards Act litigation, and despite a judicial backlash — one judge called the situation “out of hand” — the FLSA hot spot shows no signs of cooling down, according to lawyers.