United Workers Win WARN Act in ESPN Zone Case

In Tennessee and all across the country due to the economy and other problems many companies and businesses have been forced to have major layoffs in an effort to save money and to avoid other business troubles. This means that many Tennessee employees may be affected by these layoffs. It is important as a Tennessee employee that you know about the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act or WARN act and what your rights are if you lose your job due to a layoff or business closing. If this has happened to you or someone you work with, you should speak to a Tennessee employment lawyer right away for more information about your rights.

In a recent case, the ESPN Zone restaurant closed unexpectedly on June 16, 2010 and approximately one hundred and fifty employees lost their jobs. Most of the employees were paid low hourly wages with few benefits. The employees also only found out about the closing a week before it occurred, making it difficult for them to find new employment opportunities for the summer.

Following the closing in October of 2010, United Workers, a grassroots advocacy group running a larger campaign for economic justice and human rights helped the laid off employees by filing a lawsuit claiming violations of the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act or WARN Act. On January 3, 2013, two years after the lawsuit was filed, a U.S. District judge issued a ruling that United Workers see as an important victory, stressing the importance of the federal WARN Act and starting a process that would help employees get more pay under the act. Under the WARN act, companies are required by law to give workers at least sixty days’ notice of mass layoffs and mandates that if a company fails to give adequate notice it must pay workers sixty days’ worth of wages from the date notice is given.
The federal lawsuit that was filed on behalf of the ESPN Zone employees claimed that the restaurant only gave their employees notice of the closing in the form of weekly paychecks and an end lump sum and based the amounts on the employees’ earnings during the previous six months. This is a violation of the WARN Act and U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Blake agreed that workers were due additional pay, launching a second ongoing legal phase in which the pay due to each individual worker will be determined. The lawsuit is also seeking class action status making all of the laid off employees eligible for compensation.

If your company or business does not provide you with at least sixty days notice of a major layoff or closing or if the notice is not in writing, then you should speak to one of our experienced and knowledgeable Tennessee Warn Act Lawyer immediately. We care about our clients and will help answer any questions you may have about your rights and help you to get the compensation you may be entitled to by law.

Contact us online or call us at 800.705.2121 to set up a FREE consultation to discuss your legal options.

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