As reported by Law360 (November 29, 2021) – with the help of Quintilone & Associates and teams of other lawyers a California federal judge awarded $3.4 million in fees as part of an $11.5 million settlement. This Order comes after final approval of Bank of America’s $11.5 million settlement to over 25,000 tellers, personal bankers, and operations managers to resolve three proposed class actions alleging state and federal labor law violations.
The Court found that the plaintiffs — three classes of current and former nonexempt employees who have various jobs at Bank of America’s California branches — challenge Bank of America’s alleged failure to pay them for their off-the-clock work, provide meal-and-rest breaks, or reimburse expenses in violation of the California Labor Code, California’s Unfair Competition Law (UCL), and California’s Private Attorney’s General Act (PAGA). It is a putative class action under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23.
The parties settled the case, and the court granted the plaintiffs’ unopposed motion for preliminary approval of the proposed settlement. The plaintiffs moved for, and the defendants did not oppose, final approval of the settlement and attorney’s fees and costs. The court held a fairness hearing on October 28, 2021, and approved the Settlement on November 24, 2021. As part of the analysis of the settlement the Court found that “plaintiffs have shared claims and interests with their classes (and no conflicts of interest) and have retained qualified and competent counsel who have prosecuted the case vigorously. Hanlon v. Chrysler Corp., 150 F.3d 1011, 1020-1022 (9th Cir. 1998) Loc. Joint Exec. Bd. of Culinary/Bartender Tr. Fund v. Las Vegas Sands, Inc., 244 F.3d 1152, 1162 (9th Cir. 2001).
The Mendoza plaintiffs are represented by Stanley D. Saltzman Esq. and Tatiana G. Avakian Esq. of Marlin & Saltzman LLP. The Harrison and Kaffishahsavar plaintiffs are represented by Richard Edward Quintilone II Esq. and Jeffrey T. Green Esq. of Quintilone & Associates and David R. Markham Esq., Lisa Rose Brevard Esq., and Maggie K. Realin Esq. of the Markham Law Firm.
The court also held and appointed the Markham Law Firm (for the Harrison Class), Marlin & Saltzman, LLP (for the Mendoza Class), and Quintilone & Associates (for the Kaffishahsavar Class) as counsel for settlement purposes only. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 23(a) & (g)(1). They have the requisite qualifications, experience, and expertise in prosecuting class actions.
The Mendoza case is Mendoza v. Bank of America Corporation, case number 3:19-cv-02491, in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The Harrison case is Harrison v. Bank of America, case number 3:19-cv-00316, in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The Kaffishahsavar case is Kaffishahsavar v. Bank of America, case number 4:20-cv-02119, in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.