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Court Approves Settlement against Information Resources, Inc.

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Court Approves Settlement against Information Resources, Inc.

Court Approves Settlement against Information Resources, Inc.

PRESS RELEASE

Court Approves $2.25 Million Settlement of 128 Market Research Workers’ Wage Claims against Information Resources, Inc. 

February 10, 2021, San Francisco, California – A federal court in San Francisco today approved a multi-million dollar settlement on behalf of 128 client service managers nationwide.

In Bakhtiar v. Information Resources, Inc., et al., Case No. 13-00561, filed in August 2017, the plaintiffs alleged that Information Resources, Inc. (IRI) misclassified as exempt from overtime non-managerial staff in the market research industry who performed basic client service and clerical tasks. The suit asserted that these client service managers work long with few lunch or rest breaks, and with no additional compensation for their long hours each day and week.

After denying IRI’s motion to transfer the case from San Francisco, the region where the plaintiff, worked, to Chicago, where the company is based, the court conditionally certified a nationwide collective action of these client service managers, in July 2018. After extensive discovery and two mediations, the parties sought approval of a $2.25 million settlement in June 2019, which was granted in August 2020.

The settlement results in an average gross settlement payment to 128 participating class members of over $17,500 each, and will result in corporate changes at IRI affecting over 50 positions, as well.

Today’s court order approving the settlement, by Hon. Jon S. Tigar, of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, finds the settlement fair, and remarks on the “substantial results Bakhtiar’s counsel achieved for the members of the settlement classes,” which include monetary recovery that “exceeds the recoveries achieved in several other similar actions,” and “significant non-monetary relief,” involving the re-evaluation of job responsibilities of certain positions.

“We appreciate the Court’s recognition of this fine result for the client service managers,” commented Bryan Schwartz, who argued for the Plaintiff in supporting the settlement agreement. “We hope employees and employers at other market research firms will take note of this important result, and begin to fix misclassification and ensure fair overtime pay in this industry.”

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