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Cadence Design hit with California Overtime Class Action

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San Francisco, CAA nationwide class action lawsuit on behalf of tech support workers was filed last week against Cadence Design Systems, Inc., alleging the company didn't pay overtime.

The lawsuit claims that Cadence Design Systems, Inc.:
• gave hundreds of its employees fancy titles;
• called them exempt from national and California overtime laws, as well federal and out-of-state overtime laws;
• pocketed the revenues that should have been paid out in overtime.

San Francisco's dBusinessNews reported that the suit was filed on behalf of current and former Cadence Systems Engineers. The proposed class includes hundreds of systems administrators, network technicians, helpdesk support workers and other technical staff who are based in Cadence's California offices in San Jose, San Diego, Irvine, Berkeley and Napa, as well as in Massachusetts, Texas and Utah.

"Hundreds of Cadence technical support workers put in long hours to support the company's computer systems and help Cadence bring in $1.5 billion in revenues," said plaintiff's attorney Kelly M. Dermody

Here's what 45-year-old plaintiff Ahmed Higazi, a tech support worker for Cadence for five years, had to say: "I was often required to work in excess of 40 hours a week—but I did not receive overtime pay. What they did to me and other tech support workers was simply unfair. I worked hard for the company, and was not compensated for all the hours I put in for Cadence."

Higazi was responsible for installing, maintaining, and supporting computer software and hardware for the company. He left Cadence in 2004 and now works at another technology service company.

"Workers are entitled to overtime pay unless they fall under a specific legal exemption, such as computer programmers who develop software. The plaintiff and class members in this lawsuit are responsible for maintaining computer networks, not developing new software. They do not qualify for the software development exemption, or any other exemption, under wage and hour laws," said Dermody who, along with attorney James M. Finberg, filed the suit for the plaintiffs.

Says Finberg: "A corporation cannot avoid paying overtime wages simply by providing a fancy sounding title to workers who are entitled to overtime pay under the law."

The lawsuit asks the federal court to issue an injunction requiring Cadence to pay overtime wages to eligible employees as well as compensation and damages to all current and former employees who were denied overtime, both in California and elsewhere.

The lawsuit is one of the many class actions filed in California and elsewhere in the U.S. claiming that misclassification of workers is a common tactic of employers trying to avoid paying overtime wages. More and more workers are consulting lawyers to find out their rights and to see what can be done to get some compensation.

READ ABOUT THIS LAWSUIT

California Overtime Legal Help

If you work in California and you feel that you are owed overtime pay, please contact a [California Overtime Lawyer] who will review your case at no cost or obligation.

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