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How can I settle my employment/wage and hour/wrongful termination case when PAGA is alleged and LWDA opted not to act?

San Diego, CA |

Hi, I would appreciate your help in this particular situation. I want to setthe my court pending case and the defendant is willing to negotiate a settlement. There are 9 causes of action and one of them is PAGA. I am a pro per plaintiff , with a very strong (direct evidence based) case. I settled my 2 EEOC claims with the same defendant. This settlement is currently processed and the amount $$$ is mutually agreed upon.
My goal is to settle the court pending case but I wonder if the state will be entitled for its 75% of the settled amount due to my PAGA allegations?
What is the best settlement strategy under the circumstances? (this is not a class action)
Thank you!

Attorney Answers 3

  1. You brought a PAGA claim as a pro per plaintiff? You should speak to an employment attorney.

    Also, it is not clear from your question whether your EEOC claims have already been paid out by the defendant and those claims withdrawn. If they have't been withdrawn you may want to do a global settlement including both the EEOC claims and the PAGA claims. I think you could structure it in a way that lowers the compensation directed towards the PAGA claims.

    But you need to see an employment lawyer. There is some complexity to settling PAGA claims properly.

    Neville Fernandes

  2. You are asking a strategic question as well as a legal question. You will need court approval of your settlement since you filed a PAGA claim.

    You can pay a lawyer by the hour to do this for you, on a limited engagement.

    David Mallen

    David A. Mallen offers answers on Avvo for general information only. This offer of free, general answers is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. If you need specific advice regarding your legal question, you should consult an attorney confidentially. Many experienced California labor and employment attorneys, including David A. Mallen offer no-risk legal consultations to employers and employees at no charge. David A. Mallen is licensed to practice law before all state and federal courts in California, as well as the California Labor Commissioner and the California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board. Failure to take legal action within the time periods prescribed by law could result in the loss of important legal rights and remedies.

  3. These are very complicated strategic questions you are asking but none of us can really help with the strategy without knowing far more than you can disclose on this public internet site. PAGA, of course, is a form of representative action, and if you are going to settle your PAGA claim, you are settling for the others as well. Therefore, court approval will have to be involved. Your better approach might be to simply dismiss the PAGA claim without prejudice and settle the other causes of action between you and the entity.

    It would be very prudent of you to pay an employment law attorney some time to assist you through this process. You may be walking away from a great deal of money by dismissing or settling the PAGA claim in this manner. Get some knowledgeable advice.

    Good luck to you.

    This answer should not be construed to create any attorney-client relationship. Such a relationship can be formed only through the mutual execution of an attorney-client agreement. The answer given is based on the extremely limited facts provided and the proper course of action might change significantly with the introduction of other facts. All who read this answer should not rely on the answer to govern their conduct. Please seek the advice of competent counsel after disclosing all facts to that attorney. This answer is intended for California residents only. The answering party is only licensed to practice in the State of California.

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