Former Interns Agree to Settle with NBCUniversal in Labor Violations Class Action Lawsuit
A group of former interns for NBCUniversal have agreed to settle the labor violations class action lawsuit they brought against the company, claiming the production studio committed wage and labor violations by failing to pay them.
NBCUniversal offered a settlement amount of $6.4 million, much of which is considered back pay. This is the largest labor violations class action settlement involving unpaid internships.
The class action was filed in 2011 by several former unpaid interns who worked on the film “Black Swan.” The group filed the class action against Fox Searchlight Pictures, alleging that the company violated the Fair Labor Standards Act, which requires unpaid internships to benefit the intern, not the company. The former interns believed that their experience was the reverse.
The Fox class action was quickly followed by cases against Warner Music Group and Atlantic Records, as well as publishing houses like Conde Nast and Hearst Corp. Eric Glatt, one of the lead plaintiffs in the Fox labor violations class action, said that the NBCUniversal settlement is good news, and gives legal merit to claims regarding unpaid internships.
“I think that sends a very clear message to other media companies — and any large employer who has taken advantage of unpaid intern labor — that they should take this issue very, very seriously,” he said.
The plaintiffs in the NBCUniversal class action claimed that the production company paid them “no compensation or compensation at a rate less than the applicable minimum wage law,” and they were “improperly classifying them as non-employee interns exempt from federal and state minimum wage … requirements.”
Ross Perlin, author of the 2012 book “Intern Nation,” agrees that unpaid internships are often violations of wage and labor standards.
“Unpaid internships right now are a huge giveaway for employers, worth billions — that should come back to young people,” Perlin told The Times this year. He estimates that there are around 500,000 unpaid intern in the US.
Labor Violations in South Carolina
If you feel you are not receiving adequate pay for your overtime hours in violation of employment law , we may be able to help. According to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) anyone receiving hourly compensation, (subject to limited exceptions) must be paid time and half for any hours worked over 40 during one work week. The FLSA, and other employment laws, may not cover weekends or holidays unless these are specifically overtime hours. Many times employers will pay extra for holiday or weekend hours, but it is not required, and is left to the discretion of the employer.
Filing A Claim Against An Employer For Labor Violations Can Be Tricky
When filing a complaint against your employer for labor violations including lost wages and mis-tracked hours, you may want to enlist the help of a South Carolina employment attorney. Understanding overtime laws can be daunting. The South Carolina business litigation attorney at the Strom Law Firm, LLC can help you interpret labor laws and settle any labor violations you have witnessed or experienced. Many overtime claim cases are won because the employer failed to keep adequate wage and hour records. The Strom Law Firm will investigate all aspects of your labor violations claim, and seek to secure you the compensation you have rightfully earned. Call us today for a free, confidential consultation. 803.252.4800.