Lawyer Pay

Was a contract lawyer for Quinn Emanuel entitled to overtime pay? Judge hears arguments

A contract attorney doing document review was hired for his expertise and is not entitled to overtime pay, according to a lawyer for Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan who defended his firm’s pay practices before a federal judge on Tuesday.

Marc Greenwald, co-chair of the firm’s white collar and corporate investigations group, said the firm did not have to pay overtime to William Henig, who claims violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Am Law Daily reports. A lawyer for legal staffing agency Providus, a co-defendant, made similar arguments during the hearing on a motion to dismiss Henig’s suit.

Quinn Emanuel hired Henig because it wanted him to do lawyerly work, Greenwald said. Quinn “could have hired out-of-work actors for this,” but it didn’t because it wanted a lawyer to do the job, the story says.

Henig’s lawyer, D. Maimon Kirschenbaum, said his client was hired to search for key words and to sort the documents, something that could be done by a computer or a paralegal. His work did not meet the FLSA criteria for an overtime exemption for work requiring advanced knowledge, Kirschenbaum argued.

Kenig now has a solo practice, the story says.

Prior coverage: “Contract lawyer claims he is entitled to OT pay due to ‘extremely routine nature’ of job”

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