Arias v. Raimondo, No. 15-16120 (9th Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
An employer's attorney can be held liable for retaliating against his client's employee because the employee sued his client for violations of workplace law. In this case, plaintiff may proceed with his retaliation action against the attorney under sections 215(a)(3) and 216(b) of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), 29 U.S.C. 215(a)(3) and 216(b), because the complaint manifestly fell within the purview, purpose, and plain language of the FLSA. The court explained that the wage and hours provisions of the FLSA focus on de facto employers, but the anti-retaliation provision refers to "any person" who retaliates.
Court Description: Labor Law. The panel reversed the district court’s dismissal of a retaliation claim under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The plaintiff alleged that after he filed suit against his employers in state court, the employers’ attorney, acting as their agent, retaliated against him by planning for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to take him into custody at a scheduled deposition and then to remove him from the United States. The panel held that unlike the Fair Labor Standards Act’s wage and hour provisions, its retaliation provisions apply to “any person” and do not require that a defendant be the plaintiff’s employer. The panel remanded the case to the district court for further proceedings.