Only two days after a judge issued a very favorable ruling for ex-Fox Searchlight interns who claimed their unpaid internship was unlawful, two former Condé Nast interns have filed their own proposed class action lawsuit. The ruling in the Fox Searchlight case, which allowed for the two plaintiffs’ wage & hour lawsuit to proceed as a class action, provides reason to believe that this lawsuit could also have the opportunity to recover money on behalf of all Condé Nast underpaid interns.
The latest wage & hour lawsuit alleges that Condé Nast Publications, a magazine publisher of publications including The New Yorker and W Magazine, violated the Fair Labor Standards Act when it paid interns less than a dollar an hour from 2009 to 2010. Furthermore, the company failed to pay members of the Intern Class at least minimum wage for all hours worked as required under New York labor law. In fact, labor laws are clear when it comes to classifying internships in that employers cannot replace regular employees or gain an immediate advantage from the activities of the intern.
In this instance, the interns contend that they were as vital to their respective business operations as other employees, but did not even make minimum wage despite working demanding hours. The lawsuit will depend heavily on the landmark opinion provided recently by Judge William Pauley III in the Fox Searchlight class action. In that labor case, Pauley found Fox to be in violation of laws set by the Department of Labor in 2010 as they reduced payroll costs without providing interns any real training they couldn’t have attained as entry level employees. If the lawsuit against Condé Nast is successful in proving that these interns were in fact employees, it is likely to spur many more lawsuits against employers to recover back wages. In summation, companies have to pay workers for the work they do and unpaid internships must meet all the requirements provided by the Department of Labor.
Philadelphia Labor Law Firm of Sidney L. Gold & Associates: Recovering Back Wages and Compensation for Unpaid or Underpaid Employees
Beneficial to those who feel their employer violated labor laws, the recent court decisions in cases involving underpaid interns are very encouraging for those who may have been in a similar situation. The Philadelphia labor attorneys of Sidney L. Gold & Associates focus exclusively on employment and labor law and will work passionately to get you the compensation you deserve. If you have a question about your employment or believe you have been underpaid in violation of the law, call us to schedule an appointment with a knowledgeable, experienced member of our employment law team. We serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Call us at 215-569-1999 or contact us online.