Mr. Melzer is Co-Chair of the Firm’s Wage and Hour Practice Group and has helped return millions of dollars of lost wages to employees in presuit negotiations, active litigation, and trials.
Our commitment to securing justice and providing the best representation possible is reflected in a commitment to diversity within our own firm. At Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP, we know better than to think the best attorneys look alike, sound alike, think alike, or live alike. What matters is talent, and we hire the best talent available.
As a result, our team more accurately mirrors America. Women, minority, and/or openly gay lawyers make up the majority of our staff. A passion for social justice unites our team - we all work to use the power of law to help create and enforce a more just society.
Andrew Melzer is a Partner in the New York office of Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP, a national law firm with offices in the District of Columbia, New York, California, Tennessee, and Maryland, and a Co-Chair of the firm’s Wage and Hour Practice. He received his J.D. from New York University School of Law and his B.A. from Yale University.
Andrew manages all aspects of complex litigation from the initial investigation to pleadings, discovery, class certification, dispositive motions, trial practice, and settlement. He represents individuals in class and collective actions involving wage and hour, discrimination, and consumer protection claims. He also represents individuals in employment, qui tam, and other civil rights matters.
His recent matters include Smith et al. v. Merck, a nationwide gender discrimination class action on behalf of pharmaceutical sales representatives; Ravina v. Columbia Univ., a gender discrimination and retaliation case which resulted in a $1.25 million jury verdict; and In re Gateway Plaza Residents Litigation, an action by tenants of an NYC housing complex alleging breach of the implied warranty of habitability and other claims.
Andrew was trial counsel in a civil rights and wrongful death suit against Sonoma County and numerous other defendants in George v. Sonoma County, et al. who refused to treat plaintiffs’ son’s sickle-cell anemia crisis, which eventually led to his death. The case — which went to a jury trial against certain defendants – resulted in monetary settlements of more than $2 million, as well as an independent third-party study of and changes in the medical and correctional practices of the jail. He also served as trial counsel in Perkins, et al. v. Southern New England Telephone Co., a wage and hour class action that settled post-trial, and played key roles in two related cases which settled for a combined $27 million, making this among the largest recent wage and hour settlements.
Andrew has drafted briefs and petitions to US Courts of Appeals, the United States Supreme Court, and the California Supreme Court. Prior to joining the firm, he was a staff attorney at an international organization in Zurich, that restored lost and stolen assets to Holocaust victims and their heirs. From 2003 to 2005, he was a judicial law clerk on the Massachusetts Appeals Court for Chief Justice Christopher Armstrong and legendary jurist Benjamin Kaplan. In 2002, Andrew was a McCleary Law Fellow at the Human Rights Campaign where he contributed to an amicus brief submitted by civil rights organizations in Lawrence v. Texas.
- J.D., New York University School of Law, 2003
- B.A., Yale University, 1999
- Chief Justice Christopher Armstrong, Massachusetts Appeals Court
- Justice Benjamin Kaplan, Massachusetts Appeals Court
- Civil Rights Clinic
- New York, 2004
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
The German automakers’ “Pact for the Future” labor campaign eliminates 7,000 jobs in the Americas primarily held by workers born between 1995 and 1960.
This gender discrimination class action against pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co., Inc. was originally filed by Plaintiff Kelli Smith in May 2013 in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey. In January 2014, four additional class representatives from around the country joined the suit as plaintiffs alleging pay, promotion and pregnancy discrimination against the company.
The lawsuit seeks unpaid overtime wages for Claim Specialists who worked on long term disability insurance claims (“LTD Claim Specialists”) for MetLife and two of its subsidiaries, Metropolitan Life Insurance Company and MetLife Insurance Company USA.
Sanford Heisler Sharp has filed claims that 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. The case is currently in discovery and continuing investigation.
The class action suit is brought by Maureen Koetz, a resident of the neighborhood’s Gateway Plaza, a development with more than 1,700 rental units in the heart of lower Manhattan. Ms. Koetz, a former vice-president of the Gateway Tenants’ Association, describes how temperatures inside the complex regularly dropped to below 55 degrees this winter as well as past winters.
Sanford Heisler Sharp filed a class action complaint in U.S. District Court in New Jersey against Energy Plus Holdings LLC and Energy Plus Natural Gas LP (Energy Plus) for perpetrating an illegal bait-and-switch scheme that has deceived and defrauded thousands of New Jersey consumers of millions of dollars.
Norton Rose Fulbright/Chadbourne & Parke LLP Gender Discrimination Class Action – $3.1 Million Settlement
According to Plaintiff Kerrie Campbell, a nationally recognized trial lawyer and partner in Chadbourne’s Washington, DC office, female partners at the firm are excluded from positions of decision-making authority and receive less pay and bonuses even when they out-perform their male counterparts. There is only a one-tier partnership, with every partner characterized as an equity partner.
In 2012, Sanford Heisler Sharp reached a $99 million settlement with Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation (”Novartis”) to resolve a nationwide class and collective action brought on behalf of thousands of Novartis sales representatives. The settlement ranks among the largest wage and hour settlements.
Sanford Heisler Sharp represented thousands of AT&T employees in three class and collective action cases involving the telephone giant’s failure to pay overtime to its “First-Level Managers.” The cases settled for a combined $28 million, among the largest recent wage and hour settlements.
The Complaint, brought under the federal Equal Pay Act (EPA), alleges that ABOR dramatically underpaid Dr. MacCorquodale during her tenure as Honors College Dean relative to male deans at the university and to her male successors at the Honors College. Dean MacCorquodale had been employed by UA since 1978.
The employees allege that Ma Labs engaged in pervasive time-shaving, whereby it wrote off and refused to pay employees’ pre-shift and post-shift overtime. The company also allegedly failed to provide its employees off-duty, uninterrupted rest and meal periods, as required by California law. The workers are mostly Chinese and Latino immigrants. The court granted class certification in October 2014.
Federal court complaint alleges that female professors in the University of Arizona College of Science earn less, are denied promotions, and lack equal access to resources.
The company categorized these workers as salaried managerial employees but failed to pay them on a true salary basis. If the employees failed to work a particular number of hours per week, City Gear did not pay them their full salaries; instead, the company took pay deductions premised on an hourly rate of pay. The employees alleged that the company could not have it both ways and must pay them for their overtime. The case settled on a class basis in 2014.
Sanford Heisler Sharp represents employees who worked at Costco Wholesale warehouses and were subjected to unpaid security “lockdowns” as a routine part of their work day. In December 2010, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California certified their suit as a state class action in California and a federal conditional collective action nationwide. The court later decertified the action and the case is on appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. On appeal, plaintiffs claim that the court misapplied the law and deprived employees of any opportunity for relief from Costco’s wage violations.
The complaint provides extensive details regarding how the senior leadership of Columbia – including the Provost of the University and the Dean of Columbia Business School – allowed one of Columbia’s senior, tenured professors to sexually harass and obstruct the work of a female junior faculty member, plaintiff Enrichetta Ravina. Read More
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- 2013-2014, 2019-2020 New York Metro Super Lawyer