Throughout his legal career, Mr. Heisler has had notable success in employment class actions and complex multi-party and multi-state litigation, producing more than $400 million in benefits to class members.
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, 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.
Jeremy Heisler is the Managing Partner of the New York office and a Founding Partner of Sanford Heisler, LLP, a national law firm with offices in Washington, DC, New York, San Francisco, and San Diego. He received his law degree, magna cum laude, from Brooklyn Law School in 1979.
Throughout his legal career of more than thirty years, Mr. Heisler has had notable success in employment class actions and complex multi-party and multi-state litigation, producing more than $400 million in benefits to class members. Jeremy has established leading employment law precedents, including the expansion of the rights of wrongfully discharged employees. He has prevailed in novel and groundbreaking litigation against some of the largest companies in the nation.
Mr. Heisler’s most recent victory came in In Re Novartis Wage and Hour Litigation. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that sales representatives employed by pharmaceutical giant Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation were entitled to overtime pay under federal, New York and California law. As a direct result of this decision, Novartis and plaintiffs reached a $99 million class-wide settlement, the largest wage and hour settlement in 2012.
Jeremy was also instrumental in spearheading a $28 million settlement in a suit charging that three AT&T subsidiaries wrongfully denied overtime pay to a class of First-Level Managers.
Additionally, Jeremy won class certification for a group of female sales representatives who alleged that their employer engaged in gender discrimination in Velez v. Novartis. A jury ultimately returned a $250 million verdict against the company—the largest gender discrimination award in United States history and one of the five largest ever.
Jeremy recently co-authored an amicus brief for the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of women’s rights organizations and individuals in Mach Mining v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a major decision on whether and how federal courts should review the EEOC’s methods of informal dispute resolution in discrimination cases.
Mr. Heisler’s successes have been as consistent as they are varied. He has prosecuted many significant class actions, including a case against G.E. Capital with a $19.2 million settlement (consumers were overcharged with illegal fees), and a case against a major leasing company with a $15 million settlement (consumers were defrauded).
Mr. Heisler served as Law Clerk for a major Appellate Court in New York, where he drafted bench memoranda and judicial opinions on appeals ranging from constitutional law actions and criminal prosecutions to multi-million dollar real estate litigation.
- J.D., Brooklyn Law School, magna cum laude, 1979
- Editor, Brooklyn Law Review
- B.A., Brooklyn College, cum laude 1975
- Law Clerk, Appellate Term, First Department 1980-1981
- New York 1980
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York 1980
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York 1980
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit 1984
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.
Novartis Pharmaceutical Gender Discrimination Class Action – $253 Million Jury Verdict; $175 Million Settlement
In the largest gender discrimination case to ever go to trial, Sanford Heisler successfully represented a class of 5,600 female sales representatives of Novartis Pharmaceutical Company in their gender pay and promotion and pregnancy discrimination claims. A unanimous decision by a jury of nine found Novartis liable for gender discrimination in pay and promotion and pregnancy-related matters and awarded 12 former Novartis sales reps $3.36 million in compensatory damages and the class of 5,600 women an additional $250 million in punitive damages In addition, the verdict from the jury meant that the remaining 5,600 women in the class were also entitled to additional awards of backpay and to seek compensatory damage awards up to $300,000 each. The verdict and the resulting monetary awards was the largest ever in the U.S in an employment discrimination case.
In 2012, Sanford Heisler 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 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.
Sanford Heisler represented a class of approximately 6,000 female sales employees in pay and promotion and gender discrimination claims against the pharmaceutical corporation, Sanofi Aventis U.S. The settlement produced more than $15 million in monetary benefits plus the $13.4 million reverberating effect of a $2 million pay equity adjustment over a five-year period.
Sanford Heisler 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.
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 March 2015, Plaintiffs Elyse Dickerson and Dr. Susan Orr filed a Title VII and Equal Pay Act case against the pharma giant Novartis and its Alcon division in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. The lawsuit seeks $110 million, company-wide changes to redress gender discrimination, and individual relief.
According to his complaint, during his tenure at Giorgio Armani Corporation, the company’s Chief Financial Officer informed General Counsel Fabio Silva he did not trust Mexicans, and thereafter subjected Mr. Silva to increased scrutiny and discriminatory treatment. When General Counsel Silva reported this treatment to Chief Operations Officer, Giorgio Fornari, and Senior Vice President of Human Resources, Lucinda Rosso, General Counsel Silva was berated for complaining. General Counsel Silva was then denied a raise for reporting the discrimination.
In 2015, Sanford Heisler, LLP filed a $40 million lawsuit against Zara USA, Inc., the flagship brand for the largest fashion retailer in the world, Inditex Group. The lawsuit alleges that Zara discriminated against and then fired its in-house counsel, Ian Jack Miller, because he is Jewish, American, and gay. The case seeks damages for creating a hostile work environment, pay discrimination, and unlawful and retaliatory termination based on Mr. Miller’s nationality, religion, and sexual orientation.
- MetLife Hit With $50M Class Action Alleging Unpaid Overtime
- Law360, May 23, 2016 – Attys React To High Court’s Constructive Discharge Ruling
- Law360, September 17, 2015 – 4 Biggest Questions Facing Employment Class Action Attys
- NYC Tenants File $100M Class Action Over Frigid Temps
- The National Law Journal, June 20, 2012 – A Big Win for Pharma Companies in SCOTUS Overtime Case
- Energy Plus being sued by Sanford Wittels & Heisler
- Law Journal Newsletters, July 7, 2010 – 2nd Circuit Finds Novartis Drug Reps Not Exempt From Overtime Law
- Incisive Media, August 24, 2009 – D.C. firm goes West for wage-and-hour offensive
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