California District Court Grants Summary Judgment in Class Action Lawsuit Challenging the Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Overtime Status of Coventry Healthcare Case Managers

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California District Court, on its own (without a motion being filed by the employees), Grants Summary Judgment in Class Action Lawsuit Challenging the Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Overtime Status of Coventry Healthcare Case Managers

On April 25, 2012 Honorable David O. Carter denied Coventry Health Care’s (“Coventry”) motion for summary judgment in a class action lawsuit alleging that the Healthcare company improperly classified case managers as exempt vs. non-exempt from California overtime requirements. The Court also, on its own, granted summary judgment in favor of the case managers on the issue of whether they are exempt from coverage under California overtime laws. See Rieve v. Coventry Health Care, Inc, et al. in the Federal Court for the Central District of California, Case No. 11:CV:1032.

The employment law attorneys at Blumenthal Nordrehaug & Bhowmik filed a brief opposing Coventry’s motion for summary judgment, arguing that Coventry failed to carry their burden that Plaintiff came within the California overtime exemptions. According to the opposition filed by the California employment lawyers at Blumenthal, Nordrehaug & Bhowmik, “Plaintiff’s primary job duty consisted of ‘routine, clerical duties’ which are non -exempt.” Specifically, in regards to the coverage under the California administrative exemption the opposition stated, “Plaintiff did not perform work in any of the management or general business operational areas, but rather engaged in the day-to-day case management services for customers and patients.”

The Honorable David O. Carter agreed, denying Coventry’s motion for summary judgment on Plaintiff’s California state law overtime claim, and further ruled that Plaintiff was entitled to summary judgment on the issue of whether the case managers are exempt vs. non-exempt from coverage under California overtime laws.

When asked about the court’s ruling, managing partner of Blumenthal, Nordrehaug & Bhowmik, Norm Blumenthal, stated,”Coventry Health and any other company involved in this illegal practice of classifying employees performing non-exempt tasks as exempt from overtime wages is illegal and needs to be stopped.” Blumenthal added, “this is a big win for employees in the state of California.”

Blumenthal, Nordrehaug & Bhowmik is an employment law firm with offices located in San Diego, San Francisco and Los Angeles. The firm dedicates its practice to contigency fee employment law work for issues involving overtime pay, wrongful termination, discrimination and other California labor laws.

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Norm Blumenthal
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