LYTLE & BARSZCZ OBTAINS CLASS CERTIFICATION OF A NATIONAL CLASS OF HARTFORD EMPLOYEES FOR UNPAID OVERTIME
On August 25, 2017, a federal court in Orlando, FL certified a “National Collective Overtime Class” of “Disability Analysts” who worked at The Hartford Fire Ins. Co. The Court has allowed current and former Hartford Fire Ins. Co. employees to participate in the national class in federal court, or for employees who have signed Arbitration Agreements, to pursue their claims through arbitration. To proceed with your overtime claim in either the federal court action, or arbitration, contact Lytle & Barszcz today!
What is the Fair Labor Standards Act?
Generally speaking, the Fair Labor Standards Act is a federal statute which governs minimum wage and overtime pay. With few exceptions, the Fair Labor Standards Act requires employers to pay their employees at least one and one-half times the employee’s regular rate of pay for any hours the employee works in excess of forty hours for a single workweek. Where an employer inappropriately classifies an employee as exempt from overtime pay, a misclassification has occurred.
What is the federal court action?
The case of Allen v. Hartford Fire Insurance Company is currently before the federal court sitting in Orlando, Florida. The plaintiffs in Allen are Analysts who work, or worked, for Hartford and believe they were misclassified as exempt from overtime pay. As a result, these Analysts are seeking damages for unpaid overtime pursuant to the Fair Labor Standards Act for approximately the last three years.
Who is an Analyst?
The lawsuit defines an Analyst as a Hartford employee who processes disability claims. Such Analysts may hold, or have held, titles such as:
(1) Ability Analyst Segment I; (2) Ability Analyst Segment II; (3) Ability Analyst Segment III; (4) Ability Analyst Segment IV; (5) Ability Analyst IV; (6) LTD Sr. Ability Analyst; (7) Segment II Claims Analyst; (8) LTD Claims Examiner III; (9) LTD Segment II Analyst; (10) Senior Ability Analyst; (11) Senior Ability Analyst IV; (12) Senior Ability Analyst II; (13) CAR I Analyst; (14) CAR Specialist Analyst; (15) Short Term Disability Analyst III; (16) Short Term Disability Analyst IV; (17) Long Term Disability Analyst I; (18) Long Term Disability Analyst III; (19) Long Term Disability Analyst IV; (20) Long Term Disability Analyst V; (21) Claims Examiner I; (22) Claims Examiner II; (23) Claims Examiner III; (24) Claims Ability Analyst; (25) Senior Claim Ability Analyst; (26) Specialty Analyst; (27) LTD Claims Analyst III; (28) CAR Sr. Ability Analyst; (29) CAR Specialty Analyst; (30) STD Claims Analyst III; (31) LTD Claims Analyst III; (32) LTD Claims Analyst IV; (33) LTD Claims Analyst V; (34) LTD Senior Claim Ability Analyst; (35) LTD Specialty Analyst; (36) LTD III; (37) LTD IV; (38) LTD V; (39) CAR Analyst; (40) CAR Examiner; and (41) CAR Senior Ability Analyst.
The term “Analyst” also include employees who performed substantially the same work as those under the foregoing titles.
What do I need to do if I believe I should be included in the National Class?
You must act quickly! Under the Fair Labor Standards Act an employee may seek damages for unpaid overtime for a period of up to three years; however, the first day of the “lookback” period is not set until you file an “Opt-In” notice with the federal court, stating your intent to be a part of the national class. This means that every day that passes by is another day that falls outside of the lookback period, limiting the amount of unpaid overtime you may pursue.
What if I have signed an arbitration agreement? Can I still seek to recover unpaid overtime?
Absolutely. Any Hartford employee, whether they have signed an arbitration agreement or not, may still seek to recover unpaid overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act. If you have signed an arbitration agreement it simply means that you will need to pursue your rights through arbitration, as opposed to through the federal court action. Just like in the federal court action, time is of the essence. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act an employee may seek damages for unpaid overtime for a period of up to three years; however, the first day of the “lookback” period is not set until you file a “Demand of Arbitration.” This means that every day that passes by is another day that falls outside of the lookback period, limiting the amount of unpaid overtime you may pursue.
What is arbitration?
Arbitration is commonly referred to as alternative dispute resolution. It is simply another method for the resolution of legal disputes. Generally speaking, arbitration was developed as a means of deciding legal disputes between two parties in a more streamlined, cost-conscious manner when compared to traditional litigation. The law that is applied in arbitration is no different than the law applied in the federal court system. Whether you are entitled to back pay for unpaid overtime is still controlled by the Fair Labor Standards Act.
To proceed with your overtime claim as a part of the federal court action, or to seek unpaid overtime through arbitration, contact Lytle & Barszcz today!
Other Actions Against Hartford for Unpaid Overtime
Lytle & Barszcz has previously represented Hartford employees in actions for unpaid overtime and obtained favorable results. In Monserrate v. Hartford Fire Ins. Co. Lytle & Barszcz was able to obtain settlements for individual plaintiffs ranging from $6,698 to $245,658. While these results are not necessarily typical, and are heavily dependent on the facts pertinent to each individual plaintiff, Lytle & Barszcz is confident in its ability to pursue claims on behalf of Hartford employees.
In addition to Monserrate and Allen, Lytle & Barszcz currently represents a group of Hartford employees who performed work as Analysts for Hartford in the state of New York. These employees are seeking unpaid overtime under the New York Labor Law for a period spanning back up to six years. If you work for, or have worked for, Hartford as an Analyst or similar position in the state of New York and were not paid overtime, contact Lytle & Barszcz today to discuss any potential claims you may have.