Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
An Alameda County, Calif., jury on Tuesday awarded $90 million to Farmers Insurance Co. claims adjusters who said that they were denied overtime. “The jury sent a message for insurance companies and other employers,” said Steven Zieff, the lead plaintiffs’ attorney. Farmers should honor its pledge to be fair to employees by ending its attempts to appeal, he said. “It’s time to stop the delay.” The jury awarded $88.7 million to the workers for back time-and-a-half pay and $1.2 million for double time, said Zieff of San Francisco’s Rudy, Exelrod & Zieff. The unanimous verdict is one of the largest jury verdicts in a series of multimillion-dollar overtime lawsuits that have landed in California courtrooms. Recently U-Haul and Rite Aid settled similar California suits for $25 million and $7.5 million respectively. In Bell v. Farmers, 774013, 2400 California Farmers adjusters said that they routinely worked extra hours but got no overtime pay. Farmers’ attorneys, led by outside trial counsel Lee Paterson, argued that the employees were not entitled to overtime under federal labor laws. The case was closely watched by the insurance industry and heavily litigated. Farmers unsuccessfully appealed Alameda County Superior Court Judge Mark Eaton’s 1999 summary judgment, in which he found that the workers were due overtime. Once there is a final judgment, Farmers will appeal again, said Paterson. Four years ago, the insurance company rejected Zieff’s $120 million settlement offer, so Farmers will pay less than what the plaintiffs demanded earlier, he noted. The verdict could potentially change the nature of claims adjustment work from a field job where employees set their own hours, to a 9-to-5 operation, said Paterson of Los Angeles’ Winston & Strawn. “It will be a clerical job,” he said.

This content has been archived. It is available exclusively through our partner LexisNexis®.

To view this content, please continue to Lexis Advance®.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber? Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® is now the exclusive third party online distributor of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® customers will be able to access and use ALM's content by subscribing to the LexisNexis® services via Lexis Advance®. This includes content from the National Law Journal®, The American Lawyer®, Law Technology News®, The New York Law Journal® and Corporate Counsel®, as well as ALM's other newspapers, directories, legal treatises, published and unpublished court opinions, and other sources of legal information.

ALM's content plays a significant role in your work and research, and now through this alliance LexisNexis® will bring you access to an even more comprehensive collection of legal content.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]


ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.