In re Wells Fargo Home Mortgage Overtime Pay Litigation
United States District Court for the Northern District of California
527 F.Supp. 2d 1053 (N.D. Cal. 2007)
The plaintiffs in this case, all current and former employees of Wells Fargo Home Mortgage (Wells Fargo) (defendant) and all non-California residents, brought suit against Wells Fargo, alleging violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and California’s Unfair Competition Law (UCL). The employees, who worked as Home Mortgage Consultants (HMCs) for Wells Fargo, sought to certify two classes pursuant to FRCP 23: one for plaintiffs who brought claims under the UCL, and one for plaintiffs who wished to opt in to a suit alleging FLSA violations. Wells Fargo attacked the class certification, arguing that: (1) the declarations were so similar that they likely did not accurately reflect the experiences of the individual plaintiffs; (2) the seventeen declarations submitted by the plaintiffs to support the class certification were largely from two Midwest branches and did not represent the 1,600 nationwide offices; (3) six of the plaintiffs worked in a temporary refinance office that was not representative of other Wells Fargo offices; and (4) most HMCs preferred the current commission system and would not benefit from a class action. The court was required to determine whether the class could be properly certified.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Patel, J.)