Combatting Workplace Discrimination and Ensuring Fair Pay
Steven Wittels has more than two decades of experience fighting for employee rights across America. Our employment cases challenge discrimination and wage violations, including failure to pay overtime, break time, or vacation time. We also bring cases to remedy the misuse of employees’ retirement benefits.
Our goal is not only to recover compensation for victims of unlawful employment practices but also to require employers to comply with the law. We are proud to have assisted our clients in ending unfair practices and inspiring industries to improve recruitment, hiring, promotion, pay practices, and other aspects of employment.
Successfully Challenging Unlawful Employment Practices
We have successfully challenged all the ways in which companies discriminate against employees or prospective hires. Steven Wittels has recovered over $100 million in damages for his employment clients by successfully challenging policies requiring hourly workers to report to work early, stay late, or work through breaks for no pay (off-the-clock work); policies classifying employees as salaried who should have been classified as hourly workers and received overtime pay; and other employment-related claims including under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).
On the Cutting Edge of Employee Rights Litigation
Wittels Law does not wait for others to make the case for protecting our clients’ rights. For example, Mr. Wittels recently secured the largest-ever jury award in an employment discrimination case, winning more than $250 million dollars for 5,600 female employees at Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation. Novartis was found liable for sex discrimination in pay, promotions, and pregnancy. Steven Wittels settled the matter not long after and the plaintiffs are receiving millions of dollars in lump-sum payouts. In addition, Novartis is making significant changes to its policies and procedures that prevent gender discrimination in its workplace.
In another groundbreaking case, Wittels Law represented unpaid interns in a class action against Elite Model Management, the self-proclaimed “world’s most prestigious” modeling agency. The lawsuit alleged that Elite violated state and federal law wage laws by requiring its interns to do the work of employees – for no pay. The wage laws forbid companies like Elite from misclassifying their interns as exempt from wages when the employees in fact do real work – and aren’t merely shadowing higher-ups or are part of an educational program.
Distinguished Employment Litigators
Wittels Law litigates employment cases spanning a wide variety of industries, including retail, medical, insurance, technology, banking, financial services, security, and many more industries. The American Lawyer has referred to Mr. Wittels’ work as “on the winning side in overtime litigation,” and the Wall Street Journal has lauded his litigations as “game changing.” If you believe that you have been the victim of unlawful employment practices, please contact us.
"… a brilliantly tried case … a
- Federal Judge Colleen McMahon
"Exceptionally able and experienced"
- Federal Judge Kenneth Karas
"Established record of competent and successful prosecution of large ... class actions"
- Federal Judge John Koeltl