A judge has ordered a group of fired Twitter employees to drop their class action lawsuit against the company, which accuses Twitter of failing to honor its promised severance package, as previously reported by Bloomberg and Reuters. In a verdict on FridayU.S. District Judge James Donato states that the employees should plead their case in private arbitration instead, citing the employment contract they signed with Twitter.
According to the ruling, Twitter’s contract “expressly” states that arbitration is not mandatory, and also provides an option for employees to opt out of the proceedings. The judge says employees failed to opt out of arbitration, which would have given them a chance to settle matters in court. Twitter’s contract also included a class action waiver, the ruling said.
“Twitter has provided signed copies of the agreements and they are all clear and straightforward.” While five of the employees are “sentenced to arbitration on an individual basis”, the judge will decide at a later date what to do with the three other employees who joined the lawsuit in December and declared that they have withdrawn from the arbitration agreement .
The group of ex-Twitter employees first filed the class action lawsuit in November, accusing Twitter of not giving enough notice before firing them, in violation of the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act, which obliges employers to offer 60 days of reflection. notification for company-wide layoffs. them later modified the complaint to include allegations that Twitter breached its contract by not paying the severance pay they owe.
Shannon Liss-Riordan, the lawyer representing the Twitter employees, responded to the ruling in a post on Twitter. “We anticipated this, which is why we have already filed 500 individual arbitration demands — and counting,” writes Liss-Riordan. “This is not a win for @elonmusk. Twitter still has to answer claims in court, on top of the arbitration battles.