Two major California technology companies, Oracle America, Inc. and Google, Inc., have been sued by former employees for violating the California Equal Pay Act, codified at Labor Code section 1197.5. Former employees of these companies have come forward with claims that female employees are paid less than their male coworkers for performing the same work.
In Rong Jewett et al. v. Oracle America Inc., the plaintiffs accuse the company of underpaying thousands of female employees. The Hon. V. Raymond Swope of the San Mateo Superior Court granted motion for certification of a class of more than 4,100 women, finding that the “substantial common evidence [presented by the plaintiffs] supporting a top-down, centralized system makes Plaintiffs’ pay claims particularly appropriate for classwide resolution.” The class certification order can be found here.
Similarly, in Kelly Ellis, et al. v. Google Inc., former Google employees allege that the company’s inequitable pay practices are the result of a discontinued policy of asking candidates about their pay histories. According to the California EPA, “prior salary shall not justify any disparity in compensation.” Google has tried to discredit the data presented by the employees, claiming that it was fabricated. In spite of this, the Hon. Andrew Y.S. Chang of the San Francisco Superior Court recently certified a class of 10,800 women who Google employed in the past 8 years. The order can be found here.
If you believe that your employer may be paying you less because of your gender, please feel free to reach out to Lebe Law for a free consultation.