Sunday, April 10, 2016

243.1 - Good News: Supreme Court upholds class action suit claims

Good News: Supreme Court upholds class action suit claims

We start the week with some Good News coming from what is still for the most part an unexpected place, despite the loss of Team Reactionary's heaviest hitter.

On March 22, the Supreme Court, in a 6-2 decision on a class action suit, ruled that workers at a Tyson Food plant were entitled to overtime and damages after Tyson refused to pay them for time involved in certain work-related activities.

Following up on that, on April 4 the Court refused to hear appeals of two other class action suits, those two involving Wal-Mart and Wells Fargo.

The Wal-Mart case alleged that workers in Pennsylvania were not paid for all hours worked and were prevented from taking full meal and rest breaks. The Pennsylvania state Supreme Court awarded the workers $187 million in back pay and damages.

In the Wells Fargo case, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, based in San Francisco, the claim was that the bank imposed excessive overdraft fees and the outcome was a $203 million judgement against the company. The Supreme Court's refusal to hear the appeals means those lower court, pro-worker and pro-consumer judgements stand.

So despite the best efforts of corporate lawyers and reactionary justices, class action suits still exist and have just won three in a row at the Supreme Court. How is that not Good News?

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