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Labor and Employment and ERISA Class Actions After Wal-Mart and Comcast – Part III

Product Code - LGN241
Speaker(s): Howard Shapiro, Proskauer Rose LLP; Robert W. Rachal, Proskauer Rose LLP; Todd Jackson, Lewis Feinberg Lee Renaker & Jackson, P.C.; Catha Worthman, Lewis Feinberg Lee Renaker & Jackson, P.C.; M. Todd Mobley, Proskauer Rose LLP
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In Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, the Supreme Court directed lower courts to conduct a “rigorous analysis” to determine whether employment discrimination plaintiffs have proven that they meet the requirements of Rule 23. The decision raises issues on the Federal Rules’ commonality requirements and the limitations on “mandatory” classes embodied in Rule 23. After Wal-Mart, the Court again addressed class action litigation in Comcast Corp. v. Behrend, where the Court provided standards on the damages proof plaintiffs need to meet to certify an opt-out class.

In this third installment of our three-part webinar series addressing the impacts of these important cases, the faculty will address the use of experts in class actions and how parties may use expert analysis to obtain or defeat class certification.

Join us for an insightful, lively discussion about this hotly contested and developing area as the full meanings of Wal-Mart and Comcast are developed.

Educational Objectives:

• Discover the impacts of these important cases on ERISA class actions.

• Learn about the impacts of these cases on labor and employment class actions.

• Understand both defense and plaintiff perspectives of the issues and possible defenses involved in class certification.

Who would benefit most from attending this program?

Litigators in the ERISA and labor and employment areas and experts who work on class certification issues.

Program Level: Intermediate-Advanced
Prerequisite: A general understanding of class actions in an ERISA or Labor and Employment context.
CPE Delivery Method: Group Internet-Based Live
Field of Study: Specialized Knowledge and Applications
Recommended CPE Credit: 1.5 credits
Anticipated CLE Credit: 1.5 credits (may vary based on from which jurisdiction requested)

For additional information, please see the “CE Credit” tab.

Howard Shapiro, Proskauer Rose LLP; Robert W. Rachal, Proskauer Rose LLP; Todd Jackson, Lewis Feinberg Lee Renaker & Jackson, P.C.; Catha Worthman, Lewis Feinberg Lee Renaker & Jackson, P.C.; M. Todd Mobley, Proskauer Rose LLP

Moderator: Howard Shapiro, Proskauer Rose LLP
Howard Shapiro is a partner in the Employee Benefits, Executive Compensation & ERISA Litigation Practice Center of his firm, resident in the New Orleans office. He is a nationally known ERISA litigator, listed by The National Law Journal as one of the top 40 benefits lawyers in the country in the category of litigators representing management. Mr. Shapiro is ranked in the first tier of ERISA litigators by Chambers USA, which commends him as “a top class national player” with an “excellent practice with both breadth and depth.” He has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America since 1997, where he is one of the few lawyers listed in two separate categories: ERISA and Labor/Employment.

Mr. Shapiro’s national ERISA litigation practice has focused on defending matters raising sophisticated preemption issues; fiduciary issues; fiduciary misrepresentation claims; ESOP litigation issues; 401(k) plan issues; blackout period cases; plan asset diversification issues; prohibited transaction allegations; directed trustee issues; cash balance cases; independent contractor litigation; “serious consideration” cases; retiree rights litigation; severance pay cases; executive compensation/“top hat” litigation; Section 510 cases; benefit claims cases; ERISA class actions; and class-wide challenges to health plans that do not offer contraception benefits. He has appeared in federal courts from coast to coast, maintaining an active national ERISA litigation practice. In addition, Mr. Shapiro was an author and editor of the first two editions of Bloomberg BNA’s Employee Benefits Law, Third Edition, with Fall Cumulative 2013 Supplement. He has written law review articles, outlines, and other publications and speaks frequently at national seminars and other programs on ERISA litigation topics.

Mr. Shapiro earned a J.D. from Loyola University New Orleans School of Law, where he served as Comment Editor for the Loyola Law Review; an M.A. from McGill University; and a B.A. from Tulane University. He is admitted to practice in Louisiana, before the U.S. Supreme Court, and before several U.S. Courts of Appeal and District Courts.

Robert W. Rachal, Proskauer Rose LLP
Robert Rachal, Senior Counsel with Proskauer Rose, focuses on complex ERISA and labor and employment litigation, and he also advises employers on ERISA benefit and fiduciary issues. Mr. Rachal has assisted clients in the defense of numerous class actions under ERISA. Some recent examples include Hans v. Tharaldson (representing trustee fiduciary against claim ESOP paid more than fair market value for company’s stock); Allen v. Honeywell (representing company and plans against claims plan merger illegally cutback benefits, and that plan terms entitled class of participants to greater benefits); In re EDS ERISA Litigation (represented company and its officers and plan fiduciaries against claims they breached their fiduciary duties regarding investments in employer stock); and Hastings v. Wilson (represented group of pilots against claim they breached their fiduciary duties regarding investments in the company’s stock).

Mr. Rachal is a prolific writer and lecturer on cutting-edge ERISA litigation issues. He co-authors several chapters of Bloomberg BNA's ERISA Litigation, Fourth Edition, with 2013 Cumulative Supplement, including Chapters 29 “Fiduciary Duty as a Basis for Recovery for Misrepresentation and Nondisclosure,” 33 “Fiduciary Duties Regarding 401(k) & ESOP Investments in Employer Stock,” and a forthcoming chapter to be entitled “The Affordable Care Act and ERISA Litigation.” He has served as an associate senior editor of Employee Benefits Law, Third Edition, with Fall Cumulative 2013 Supplement and also co-authored the article "Cigna Corp. v. Amara and ERISA’s Equitable Remedies: Revolutionary Overthrow or Doctrinal Clarification?” 25 Benefits L.J. 37 (Spring 2012). He speaks regularly on ERISA fiduciary, preemption and ethics issues.

Mr. Rachal earned a J.D., summa cum laude, from Tulane University Law School, where he served as Senior Articles Editor for the Tulane Law Review; and a B.S. from the University of New Orleans. He is admitted to practice in Louisiana and before several U.S. Courts of Appeal and District Courts.

Todd Jackson, Lewis Feinberg Lee Renaker & Jackson, P.C.
Todd Jackson is a named shareholder with Lewis, Feinberg, Lee, Renaker & Jackson, P.C., where he represents employees in class action cases involving overtime pay, pension benefits, and employment discrimination. He has served as lead or co-lead counsel in numerous class cases, including overtime cases on behalf of technology workers, chicken processing workers, construction workers, insurance claims representatives, and overseas defense contractors and has represented classes in ERISA cases, including ESOP litigation and breach of fiduciary duty cases, and employment discrimination cases for restaurant workers and retail workers.

Mr. Jackson is the Plaintiffs’ Co-Chair of the ABA’s Employee Benefits Committee; a chapter editor of Bloomberg BNA’s Employee Benefits Law, Third Edition, with Fall Cumulative 2013 Supplement and The Fair Labor Standards Act, Second Edition, with 2013 Cumulative Supplement; and the co-author of the “Mediating Wage and Hour Disputes” chapter in the Continuing Education of the Bar-California’s California Wage and Hour Law and Litigation. He is also the author of numerous other articles on class actions, ERISA fiduciary rules, and wage and hour litigation. Mr. Jackson frequently speaks at legal conferences on class actions, employee benefits law and wage and hour law.

Mr. Jackson is a graduate of the Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California at Berkeley and Johns Hopkins University. Prior to joining his firm, Mr. Jackson served as a law clerk to the Honorable Judith Keep of the United States District Court for the Southern District of California.

Catha Worthman, Lewis Feinberg Lee Renaker & Jackson, P.C.
Catha Worthman is a shareholder at Lewis, Feinberg, Lee, Renaker & Jackson, P.C. in Oakland, California. She represents employees and retirees in class actions and other multi-plaintiff actions, as well as in individual benefits litigation and administrative claims. Ms. Worthman’s practice focuses on enforcing workers’ rights, including recovering unpaid wages and overtime; securing pensions, disability, and other promised employee benefits; and challenging breaches of fiduciary duty under ERISA.

Ms. Worthman is a rewrite and contributing author to Employee Benefits Law, Third Edition, with Fall Cumulative 2013 Supplement and a co-editor of the ABA Labor and Employment Law Section’s Employee Benefits Committee newsletter. She is also the co-author of an article entitled “Have You Got What It Takes for Federal Court? CAFA’s Amount in Controversy” and the author of a chapter on California’s Private Attorney General Act in the Continuing Education of the Bar-California’s Employment Damages and Remedies.

After graduating from Boalt Hall School of Law, Order of the Coif, Ms. Worthman served as a law clerk to Judge William A. Fletcher of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. She also worked for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) for more than 10 years before and after law school.

M. Todd Mobley, Proskauer Rose LLP
Todd Mobley is an associate in the Labor & Employment Department, resident in Proskauer’s New Orleans office. His practice focuses on complex ERISA litigation, handling matters involving both employee benefits and breach of ERISA fiduciary duty claims. He also represents multiemployer benefit funds seeking to collect withdrawal liability and delinquent contributions from contributing employers. Mr. Mobley also maintains an active pro bono practice, and has been recognized as Empire State Counsel by the New York State Bar Association for his pro bono work.

Before joining Proskauer, Mr. Mobley served as a Special Assistant Corporation Counsel in the Office of the Corporation Counsel of the City of New York, Administrative Law Division, handling numerous civil cases including challenges of determinations of regulatory agencies and actions involving the exercise of New York City’s regulatory authority. In addition, he prosecuted criminal cases involving Building Code and Fire Code offenses.

Mr. Mobley earned a J.D. from the University of California-Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law, and a B.A., summa cum laude, from Columbia University.

This program’s CLE-credit eligibility varies by state. Bloomberg BNA is an accredited provider in the states of New York*, California, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia, and most other jurisdictions grant CLE credit on a per-program basis. At this time, Bloomberg BNA does not apply directly to the states of Florida, Rhode Island, Montana and Hawaii although credit is usually available for attorneys who wish to apply individually. Additionally, the following states currently do not grant credit for Bloomberg BNA OnDemand programming: Arkansas, Ohio, Nebraska, and Delaware. All requests are subject to approval once the live webinar has taken place or the customer has viewed the OnDemand version. Please contact the Bloomberg BNA accreditations desk if you have specific questions that have not been addressed.

*Bloomberg BNA is an accredited provider in New York for experienced attorneys only.

Hardship Policy
For information regarding Bloomberg BNA’s Hardship Policy, please visit the Continuing Education Information page.

Individual programs, subjects, and formats may not receive credit in some states and there may be specific rules regarding who may earn credit or the maximum number of credit hours that may be earned with specific formats. For specific questions, contact your state MCLE regulatory entity for specific questions about your MCLE rules or visit the American Bar Association’s website for general information on accreditation.

If you have further questions regarding a specific state or how to file for CE credit, please contact Bloomberg BNA customer service at 800-372-1033 and ask to speak to the CLE Accreditation Coordinator or send an email to