Below is the first part of an article by Juliana kenny from insidecounsel.com. It reads…
Class action status clarified in California in Duran vs US Bank. The Case has become controversial for a few reasons — the main of which is the case’s use of statistical sampling to prove liability. The decision issued by the California Supreme Court is likely to shape the future of class actionlawsuits in the state, as the court found that the trial court had improperly certified a class of employees.
The case surrounds the claim that came from bank officers who sued on behalf of a supposed class of 260 employees. They alleged that they had been misclassified as exempt employees under the California Labor Code and thusly deserved compensation for their overtime wages. The trial court performed a liability proof test using 20 randomly selected plaintiffs to testify, and used that number of plaintiffs to determine that the entire group of 260 employees should be classified as having been denied overtime. The first phase of the trial resulted in the court then turning to damages owed to these employees, which amounted to $15 million that U.S. Bank had to fork over. After the case was appealed, the Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s decision, citing the “trial by formula” in error as the employer was unable to access its due process of rights and raise individual challenges to the class members’ claims who had not been present.
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