Sara was a long-term employee who worked for one of the world’s largest employers. She was six months pregnant and planned to take maternity leave before returning to work at full steam. Unfortunately, when COVID hit in March 2020, Sara’s upcoming maternity leave put her at the top of the employer’s layoff list. She was furloughed and a few months later she was fired.
Sara spoke to many lawyers after her layoff, all of whom told her that COVID layoffs were common and that they couldn’t help her. She stopped looking for attorneys and focused on finding a new job to support her new family.
A few months later, Sara found King & Siegel online and made one last attempt to find a lawyer. She emailed on a Saturday with a description of her situation and Julian Burns King immediately took interest and responded. After speaking for almost an hour on Saturday afternoon, Sara sent over documents, signed an engagement agreement, and King & Siegel began work on the case.
King & Siegel filed Sara’s case and immediately served extensive discovery to understand the criteria and rationale for the layoffs. In discovery, King & Siegel learned that the company had abandoned its formal criteria to choose Sara for layoff; she did not meet a single one of the criteria listed. Instead, a lone manager chose her for termination shortly after pestering Sara about her plans for maternity leave. After she was fired, Sara’s manager corresponded frantically about his hope that Sara would accept a cheap severance rather than pursuing litigation.
Once this evidence was discovered, Sara’s employer asked to mediate the case in an effort to resolve it. King & Siegel demanded additional discovery as a condition of agreeing to mediate the case. This additional discovery revealed that Sara had been underpaid relative to her peers for at least five years, increasing her damages and the value of her case. King & Siegel also discovered that many of Sara’s female peers had made additional complaints about this manager’s preference for white men and his failure to consider women for professional opportunities within his department.
Sara’s case resolved at mediation for a confidential sum in the seven figures. Sara’s experience with King & Siegel was so positive that she says, “I wouldn’t just recommend [Julian], I would say if you have any employment issue, she IS the only choice.”
David L.’s Story
David worked for one of the world’s largest tutoring companies. He was an exemplary employee who rose through the ranks from tutor to an instructor of other tutors. While working with a crop of new hires, David began to realize that the company wasn’t fairly paying him and his fellow employees.
David learned that the company was shorting employees on meal and rest periods and making them work off the clock without pay. David was extremely upset at this behavior. He believed the company was taking advantage of its employees, who were generally seasonal or worked infrequently so that they couldn’t tell they were being mistreated.
David sought out legal counsel and found King & Siegel. Our class action attorneys immediately recognized the problems that David discussed, as well as several others he had missed. We quickly filed a class action lawsuit on David and the over 800 other employees’ behalf.
The company immediately asked to mediate the case—recognizing that they had significant liability on the claims. The case resolved at mediation for $1,250,000—or $1,556 per class member—and was subsequently approved by the San Bernardino County Court. David and the class members were overjoyed. Not a single class member objected to the settlement and David was so happy with the result that he wrote “Julian and Elliot provided a result that I could have never dreamed of! There is no doubt that their fortitude and thirst for justice will be a force to reckon with.”
David D.’s Story
David D. was a long-time maintenance worker for a large real estate management company in Southern California. For nearly a decade, David and his fellow workers were misclassified as independent contractors and forced to 60-80 hours per week without overtime pay or meal or rest breaks. Not only were they paid incorrectly, but David and his fellow employees were subjected to frequent and demeaning harassment and discrimination by a white supervisor simply because they were Hispanic, including racial slurs.
After years of putting up with this unacceptable behavior, David had had enough. He found King & Siegel online and, after interviewing with a number of law firms, put his trust and faith in us. We filed suit on behalf of David and 5 of his fellow employees.
The cases were compelled to arbitration, where King & Siegel aggressively litigated on the employees’ behalf. We filed numerous motions when the company failed to turn over documents and challenged the company when it tried to countersue David and the other employees on trumped claims of theft. We knocked out several of the claims immediately on motion practice and demanded evidence on the remaining claims—evidence that we discovered the company lacked.
After a year of hard-fought litigation, the company came to us and asked to mediate the case for the second time. By then, King & Siegel had amassed a mountain of documentation establishing the company’s failure to pay proper wages and multiple witnessed had testified to the egregious harassment. A key employee of the company had further testified that the company had retaliated against the employees once we filed suit and lied about it during the arbitrations. Moreover, several of the arbitrators had indicated that our claims about misclassification appeared correct under the law although no ultimate determination had yet been made. David’s case settled at that mediation for a confidential amount in the seven figures. David and the others were ecstatic at the result, telling us that “words cannot describe the amount of gratitude that I am feeling. You all did an amazing job! It’s been such a long road, and I’m glad that I will be finally able to close the chapter. The trajectory of my life and the lives of my children will be changed forever. Thank you for believing in us, and fighting for us!”