At 12:00 p.m. on September 10th, 2019 FBFG Partner Jeremiah Frei-Pearson will speak at Harvard Law school about how to obtain justice for workers in the face of forced arbitration. Learn more here. Forced arbitration is the primary defense used by companies who violate minimum wage laws; it is often horribly unfair and used to systematically impede access to justice. But arbitration defenses can be defeated and FBFG has a policy of not letting arbitration stop their fight for justice. In some cases, FBFG has persuaded courts that the companies’ arbitration agreements are unenforceable. See, e.g., In re Zappos.com, Inc., Customer Data Sec. Breach Litig., 893 F. Supp. 2d 1058 (D. Nev. 2012). In other cases, FBFG and Mr. Frei-Pearson have successfully pursued individual arbitrations at such a rate that it forced companies involved, who attempted to use arbitration to deny workers their right to be in court or be part of class actions, to agree to multimillion dollar class settlements and to fix the wage problems they were trying to keep out of court. See, e.g., Reed v. Friendly’s Ice Cream, LLC, No. 15-0298 (M.D. Pa.). As a result of this work, Magistrate Judge Timothy Rice praised Mr. Frei-Pearson and FBFG as “a great example to the bar of what zealous advocacy really means” who “put the class members’ interests ahead of their own interests.” Bellaspica v. PJPA, No. 13-3014, ECF No. 148, at 14:12-22, 15:15-16:13 (E.D. Pa. June 22, 2016);
Harvard’s People’s Parity Project (PPP) will host the lecture. PPP is a group of law students “working with students, faculty, and stakeholders to end harassment and discrimination in the legal profession.” Learn more here. Mr. Frei-Pearson looks forward to discussing arbitration with members of the PPP and to supporting the PPP’s efforts to end the practice of forced arbitration.