Case Type: Wage and Hour
Company: Oracle America, Inc.
If you are a current or former Oracle sales representative, we encourage you to visit oraclecommissionslawsuit.com to learn more and provide information for our investigation.
Class Action Lawsuit
Sanford Heisler Sharp, along with co-counsel from Kastner Kim LLP, filed a class action complaint in U.S. District Court in San Francisco against Oracle, alleging that the Silicon Valley giant has stiffed its sales employees of millions in earned commission wages by retroactively changing commission contracts. The complaint alleges that Oracle retroactively increases quotas or decreases commission rates on past sales, so that it pays sales employees less than what their existing compensation plans require. Filed on behalf of class representative Marcella Johnson, the lawsuit seeks unpaid commission wages and waiting time penalties and requests an injunction and other relief on behalf of a class of California sales employees.
Were You a Sales Rep Who Didn’t Receive Full Commissions?
The lawsuit claims that Oracle “re-plans” employees to reduce commissions earned on completed sales going back to any time of Oracle’s choosing, sometimes to the beginning of the same fiscal year and even earlier. When it “re-plans” employees after commission wages have already been paid, according to the complaint, Oracle claws back prior payments by withholding newly earned commissions until the employees have paid the company back or threaten a collections lawsuit. The lawsuit also describes Oracle’s retroactive re-plans as a willful and systematic scheme led by the finance department designed to align commissions with financial forecasts and bottom line goals.
By reducing and withholding commissions in such fashion, the lawsuit claims, Oracle’s commission policies and practices violate numerous California Labor Code requirements and caused damages of over $150 million to California employees in a four-year period.
According to the complaint, Plaintiff Marcella Johnson was a typical sales employee subjected to a retroactive re-plan that reduced her commission payments. Oracle demanded that Johnson pay back a substantial amount of her earned commissions that had been paid before the re-plan. “Oracle has essentially confiscated significant amounts of commission dollars from its salesforce by retroactively changing the terms of commission contracts at will. It is grossly unfair and it violates California law,” said Xinying Valerian, Senior Litigation Counsel at Sanford Heisler Sharp.
“Even though Oracle is one of the world’s largest technology companies,” said Daniel Qualls of Kastner Kim, “it needs to be held accountable for paying sales employees the commissions they have earned. It cannot just point to fine print that supposedly allows it to reduce commissions after the fact.”
Private Attorney General Act Lawsuit
Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP currently represents Plaintiff Maryam Abrishamcar, a former sales representative at Oracle America, Inc. (“Oracle”), in a commission wages lawsuit pending in the Superior Court of California, County of San Mateo.
Sanford Heisler Sharp asserts that Oracle has engaged in unlawful practices against sales representatives by failing to pay them full and timely commissions. Through the use of a long and confusing set of Terms and Conditions issued to each sales representative with his or her compensation plan, Oracle unlawfully and retroactively reduced the commissions of sales representatives based on grounds, criteria, and methods not defined in a signed commission contract. Under these lengthy Terms and Conditions, which employees were required to sign to receive their compensation, Oracle reserved to itself the right to adjust the commission payouts of sales representatives for any reason, leaving representatives expecting one number on their paycheck but often receiving something very different. Additionally, Oracle imposed an illegal confidentiality agreement on its sales representatives as a condition of employment. Oracle denies these claims and asserts various defenses.
Under California’s Private Attorney General Act (“PAGA”), Ms. Abrishamcar seeks to recover civil penalties for these violations on behalf of sales representatives in California.
Sanford Heisler Sharp attorney Xinying Valerian and Daniel Qualls of Kastner Kim, LLP, a Palo Alto-based employment law firm, are prosecuting this lawsuit together.
We are currently seeking more information from current and former Oracle sales representatives on the procedure and terms of their commission pay.
If you are a current or former Oracle sales representative, please visit oraclecommissionslawsuit.com to submit information or questions about the case. You may also contact Sanford Heisler directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or 415-795-2020.