Kelly Dermody in Law360 on Gender Bias Challenges Facing Uber and Other High Tech Companies

High Tech Gender Discrimination

Law360 (subscription) gives high-tech gender bias a new close look through the lens of Uber’s recent widely-reported fair treatment failure with regard to one high-profile female engineer. Lieff Cabraser attorney Kelly Dermody, head of the firm’s Employment Discrimination practice group and managing partner of the San Francisco office, spoke with the publication about challenges facing companies, particularly tech companies, when Human Resources departments are given second-class status. [Read more…]

Kelly Dermody in LA Times on Emerging Sexual Harassment Claims Against Uber

Kelly Dermody in LA Times on Emerging Sexual Harassment Claims Against Uber

On February 19th, a former Uber employee alleged on her personal blog that she had been sexually harassed while working at the ride-sharing company. The former tech employee stated that when she reported the situation to HR and upper management, they didn’t do anything to handle the offense, noting that even though it was clearly sexual harassment, “it was this man’s first offense” and since he was a “high performer” in the company’s eyes they wouldn’t feel comfortable punishing him for what was “probably just an innocent mistake on his part.” [Read more…]

Lieff Cabraser Files Amicus Brief on Behalf of Public Justice in Uber Forced Arbitration Case

Lieff Cabraser Files Amicus Brief in Support of Public Justice in Uber Forced Arbitration Case

As reported by Law360, Public Justice (represented by Lieff Cabraser) has filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit urging the affirmation of the district court’s decision denying a motion to compel arbitration in a consumer lawsuit against the Uber ride-sharing service. In the case, Uber seeks to impose mandatory arbitration requirements on consumers — contract terms of which they had no notice and to which they did not affirmatively agree. The brief notes that this is not only contrary to longstanding law, but also fundamentally unfair: Companies should not be permitted to force consumers making online transactions to abide by terms to which they do not agree, simply because those terms are available elsewhere online. [Read more…]

Daniel Hutchinson in The Recorder on Uber’s Unintended Legal Pathbreaking

Daniel Hutchinson in The Recorder on Uber's Unintended Legal Pathbreaking

Uber’s settlement of several impending labor class action lawsuits may open the door to other new economy companies facing similar suits, according to The Recorder (subscription). Industry-wide, the “are-they-independent-contractors-or-are-they-employees” question, with all its attendant legal ramifications, remains open. And as the Recorder points out, open questions — particularly open questions that lead to multi-million dollar lawsuits — lead to lawsuits. [Read more…]