SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Kelly M. Dermody of Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, announced that current and former Wells Fargo technical support workers throughout the United States are a significant step closer to recovering pay for overtime hours they worked. Yesterday, Judge Claudia Wilken of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California granted plaintiffs’ motion for certification of the case as a collective action. The complaint charges that the workers should have been paid overtime for hours worked over 40 per week.
“Wells Fargo became one of the nation’s largest banks in large part because of the hard work and dedication of its employees, including those that keep its computer systems operating properly,” stated Aaron Cooper, one of the plaintiffs. “I am glad that my fellow IT support workers can join the case and have the opportunity to get paid for the many hours of overtime they have worked for many years.”
“In granting certification, the Court conditionally recognizes that these employees have similar job duties, such that addressing their claims in a single action – rather than many individual lawsuits – is appropriate,” noted Ms. Dermody. “We look forward to proving at trial that Wells Fargo misclassified certain IT workers under federal and state wage and hour laws as exempt from overtime pay.”
The next step in the litigation the providing of notice to class members. A one-page form, called a “consent to join form,” will be sent by U.S. mail and email to the several thousand employees, within nine days of today. Each employee should protect his or her rights by returning the form to the plaintiffs’ counsel. Until an individual sends in that form, his or her statute of limitations (the time period for which overtime pay can be recovered) continues to run.
The Court-approved notice to the class can be found at http://www.lieffcabraser.com/pdf/20091027-wf-consent.pdf http://www.lieffcabraser.com/employment/wells-fargo.htm, and the single-page consent to join form employees must complete and mail to protect their rights can be found at http://www.lieffcabraser.com/pdf/20091027-wf-notice.pdf.
“Wells Fargo employees who wish to protect their rights should promptly send in the form. For each day that they delay submitting the form, they risk losing a day of overtime pay,” explained Ms. Dermody. “The employees must file those forms within 75 days to be able to recover under federal law, or they risk losing their opportunity to assert their federal rights in this lawsuit forever.”
Current and former employees of Wells Fargo & Company, who worked as technical support workers, with the primary duties of installing, maintaining, and/or supporting Wells Fargo’s software and/or hardware, filed the complaint in 2008. The suit, entitled Lewis v. Wells Fargo, Case No. 08-2670 CW, includes overtime claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) as well as the laws of California and Minnesota.
The Court’s October 26, 2009, order certified a class that includes all Network Engineers, Operating Systems Engineers, Information Security Analysts, Technical Service Specialists, Systems Support Analysts, Web Engineers, Web Support Engineers, Web Systems Engineers, Operating Systems Analysts (level 2), Systems QA Analysts (levels 2 or 3), Computer Operations Analysts (levels 3 or 4), Database Administrators (levels 2 or 3), and Applications Systems Engineers (level 3) who worked for Wells Fargo as exempt employees at any time during the past three years anywhere in the United States.
An estimated 3,000 employees are eligible to participate. Wells Fargo reclassified some of these employees to hourly status and paid many of them what plaintiffs allege are incomplete backpay awards. These reclassified workers are eligible to participate even if they received such payments.
Further Information For Wells Fargo IT Workers
Current and former Wells Fargo technical support workers who wish to learn more about the lawsuit or to join the lawsuit should visit http://www.lieffcabraser.com/employment/wells-fargo.htm or call 1-800-541-7358 to contact the plaintiffs’ attorneys.
Representing plaintiffs and class members are law firms Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP and Haber Polk LLP. Members of the media can obtain a copy of the Court’s order by contacting Jahan C. Sagafi of Lieff Cabraser by e-mail at email@example.com.