City and County of San Francisco, SFUSD, and San Francisco City College to Face Class Action Over Alleged Age Discrimination Against Retirees
Oakland, CA (Law Firm Newswire) March 17, 2021 – Joyce Carroll, Maria Pavia, Verlyn L. Papillon, and Gary D. Saballos allege the City and County of San Francisco, San Francisco Unified School District, and San Francisco City College have a common policy of paying significantly reduced retirement benefits to employees forced to retire prematurely due to disabilities. Pending since November 20, 2017, their case has already gone up on appeal once when San Francisco failed to persuade judges to throw out the claims based on statute of limitations and governmental immunity arguments. See, Carroll v. City and County of San Francisco (2019) 41 Cal.App.5th 805, review denied depublication denied Jan. 29, 2020.
Now, on Friday, March 12, 2021, Judge Andrew Y.S. Cheng of the San Francisco Superior Court granted class certification for the claims against San Francisco. (The Court also granted provisional certification as to SFUSD and City College pending the addition of suitable class representatives.) The Court appointed the law firm Aiman-Smith & Marcy, PC as counsel to represent the certified class. The Court has not yet ruled on the merits of the lawsuit.
Mr. Brent Robinson, associate attorney and lead counsel for the plaintiffs, stated that at least 256 class members have been identified thus far, although he expects that number to grow as additional employees retire, and as the parties continue their ongoing efforts to identify class members.
Mr. Robinson commented: “We are grateful for Judge Cheng’s well-reasoned opinion, which was evidently the result of a tremendous amount of careful consideration given the 2000-plus pages of briefing submitted by the parties prior to the hearing.”
Reed W.L. Marcy, a partner, added, “This decision confirms that when an employer has a policy of discriminating against its employees, courts will certify a class action so that all those affected by that policy can benefit. It is also a resounding win for our clients, who we contend have been denied equal pay for equal work by the City’s discriminatory disability retirement policy. We look forward to the opportunity to prove these claims on behalf of the class.”
San Francisco is represented by the San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera. SFUSD is represented by Daphne M. Anneet of Burke, Williams & Sorensen, LLP. City College is represented by Alyson S. Cabrera of Gordon Rees Skully Mansukhani.
The case is Joyce Carroll et al. v. City and County of San Francisco, et al., San Francisco Superior Court Case No. CGC-17-562580.
About Aiman-Smith & Marcy
Aiman-Smith & Marcy is a boutique law firm based in Oakland, California, focusing on consumer fraud, employment, and class action lawsuits. Their team of lawyers works cooperatively, offering their unwavering commitment to protecting the rights of employees, consumers, and investors. Aiman-Smith & Marcy can be contacted online at www.asmlawyers.com, or by calling (510) 817-2711 or (800) 798-8498.