An unpaid wage class action lawsuit is a type of legal action where there is one or multiple “named” plaintiffs that sue a defendant on a larger group of people’s behalf. This group is referred to as a class while the named plaintiffs are the representatives of this class.
What Is an Unpaid Wage Lawsuit?
There are several different ways in which these cases are different from individual plaintiff cases. Those differences include the following:
- Precedent and potential outcomes
- Recovery even when there are only small individual damages
- Number of individuals who are represented
The suits are brought on the behalf of a very large number of individuals who have joined together in a class after being paid unfairly, instead of only on the behalf of one plaintiff. In addition they allow for recoveries of small damages per person that wouldn’t be practical otherwise to sue for based on cost of litigation. With a discrimination class action lawsuit the outcome might include setting precedent and changing the defendant’s behavior. According to cooperemploymentlaw, sometimes the cases might stop the defense as well as others within an industry from engaging in unfair business practices, like failin got pay their employees properly.
Class Action Benefits
Class action benefits may include the following:
- Injunctive relief
- Individuals with fairly small damages still can recover
- Efficient method for handling large numbers of claims
Public Policy Benefits
When you are a member of a class, even if you only have minimal losses, you still might be able to receive compensation that otherwise would be negated or exceeded by the cost of litigation over the loss that has been suffered. A lawsuit that is successful might also provide injunctive relief, meaning that the defendant is prohibited from continuing the behaviors or actions in the future that were part of the dispute. The suits might also allow the setting of critical public policy precedents that benefit all of society, like preventing a manufacturer from not providing an adequate warning of the potential dangers that their products might pose or stopping an employer from engaging in an illegal labor practice.
Should My Case Be Part Of A Class Action?
There are many different kinds of cases that can potential be class actions. Here are the most common ones:
- A group of consumers who bought a defective product or who have been misled by deceptive business practices or false advertising
- Employees who have been subjected to their employer’s illegal practices, like age discrimination or hour and wage violations
- Community members and landowners who have been affected by the harm that has been caused to the environment by the defendant, like water or air pollution
- Investors and customers who have suffered losses from illegal business practices like breaches of security law, predatory lending or unlawful fees being charged
What Compensation May I Receive For My Suffering?
Class members are allowed to recover damages in a successful lawsuit. The kinds of damages that a class can recover include the following:
- Monetary/economic losses
- Attorneys fees and other litigation costs
- Statutory penalties
Economic losses, like lost wages or excessive/illegal fees, might be able to be recovered in a class action lawsuit. There are some statutes that provide for penalties as well, which class members might be awarded if their case is won. In certain cases, litigation costs, including attorneys’ fees, might be awarded as well.
Federal vs. State
The lawsuits may be filed in federal or state court, with each venue having its own advantages as well as disadvantages.
The requirements in Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 govern a class action that is filed in a federal court. In order for a class action to be certified under Rule 23, the following requirements must be satisfied by the case:
– the class has so many members that it is impracticable to joinder all members;
– there are questions of fact or law that are common to the class;
– the representative parties defenses or claims are typical of the defenses or claims of the class; and
– the representative parties will adequately and fairly protect the class interests.