Cases & Deals

AMS and MCS secure dismissal of independent contractor misclassification putative wage-and-hour class action and claims under the Private Attorney General Act

Clients Mortgage Contracting Services, LLC

Jones Day successfully obtained the dismissal of a putative wage-and-hour class action filed against Mortgage Contracting Services, LLC ("MCS") and Asset Management Specialists, LLC ("AMS") challenging their fundamental business practices concerning classification of their service providers as independent contractors. In February of 2014, the plaintiff instituted a wage-and-hour class action lawsuit against MCS and AMS, two national companies in the business of supplying "vendors" to preserve properties owned by the government and various banks, asserting he and the putative class members were misclassified as independent contractors, involving approximately $160 million in potential liability. In August of 2016, AMS and MCS asked Jones Day to take over the case from a different law firm. The Jones Day team moved for summary judgment and opposed plaintiff Vinson’s motion for class certification. Shortly after the filing of our opposition to class certification, plaintiff settled the matter on an individual basis and dismissed the class allegations.

Notably, during this same time, plaintiff’s counsel brought a separate action asserting identical claims against a competitor of our clients. In that case, the court certified the class and granted summary judgment for the plaintiff. The case proceeded to trial on damages, where the jury awarded more than $2 million in damages for 11 representative class members. There are approximately 200 additional class members in that matter, and the total damages are likely to exceed $40 million prior to any award of attorneys’ fees or costs.

Vinson v. Asset Management Specialists, Inc., Case No. EDCV 14-00369 DDP (C.D. Cal.)

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