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Huntsman v. Southwest Airlines

This case involves a class action lawsuit against Southwest Airlines alleging that Southwest violated certain pension and employee benefit provisions of the Uniformed Services Employment and Re-employment Rights Act (USERRA). Specifically, the complaint alleges that Southwest did not count short term military leave for pension calculation purposes and that Southwest did not allow pilots on short term military leave to accrue sick leave whereas Southwest allowed pilots on comparable forms of non-military short term leave to accrue paid sick leave.

 

A copy of the complaint is available here.

 

After the complaint was filed the parties engaged in extensive discovery and, following that, settlement negotiations. On September 14, 2018, the parties filed papers with the Court asking it to approve the settlement. The settlement provides for a $5.8 million cash settlement, recovery of between 100 – 77% of sick leave (which is assessed to be valued in excess of $13 million), and changes to Southwest’s policies regarding sick leave accrual during short term military leave.

 

The following documents were filed with the Court as part of the settlement process.

 

Motion for Preliminary Approval and Class Cert.

 

Declaration of Declaration of Peter Romer-Friedman, which contains a copy of the Settlement Agreement.

 

Declaration of Matthew Crotty and Thomas Jarrard.

 

A link to the class action website is available here.


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