Apple, other Silicon Valley firms reach new settlement deal to end poaching lawsuit

“Silicon Valley companies have sweetened the pot to try to get rid of an embarrassing class-action antitrust suit that accuses them of conspiring against their own employees,” David Streitfeld reports for The New York Times. “Apple, Google, Intel and Adobe are offering a joint payment of $415 million to settle the case, according to a source close to the negotiations, up from the $324.5 million they offered in the spring.”

“Lawyers for the 64,000 software engineers who are the class-action plaintiffs have already agreed to the new figure, but that does not automatically end the case. The earlier amount was acceptable to the plaintiffs’ lawyers, but it was rejected by the judge overseeing the case as inadequate,” Streitfeld reports. “The settlement money is pocket change to the companies, which include some of the world’s wealthiest. If they let the case go to trial, however, it might corrode their image as forward-thinking, worker-friendly benevolent empires.”

“The first settlement was criticized by one of the five named plaintiffs, Michael Devine, who said it was not enough to deter the companies. In an unusual move for a judge in a class-action case, Lucy H. Koh agreed in August that the initial settlement was not ‘within the range of reasonableness.’ She appeared annoyed that the lawyers for the class were taking the easy way out by settling,” Streitfeld reports. “The lawyers’ cut of the settlement is as much as 25 percent. If the case went to trial, they might lose, in which case they would get nothing for years of work.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: If anyone understands years of work wasted in a courtroom presided over by Lucy Koh, it’s Apple.

Related articles:
Apple, Google appeal Judge Lucy Koh’s settlement rejection in no-poach lawsuit – September 5, 2014
Judge Koh says she’s concerned about Apple, Google anti-poaching settlement – June 20, 2014
Plaintiff blasts Apple, Google, Adobe, Intel settlement deal in Silicon Valley poaching case – May 12, 2014
Apple, Google, Intel, Adobe settle antitrust hiring case for $324 million – April 24, 2014
Apple, Google, other firms could pay ‘blindingly high’ $9 billion in anti-poaching suit – April 8, 2014
A whiff of settlement in Silicon Valley anti-poaching case – March 28, 2014
Steve Jobs wasn’t okay with Google hiring even former Apple engineers – March 27, 2014
Judge Koh: 60,000 Silicon Valley workers may pursue collusion case against Apple, Google, others as group – January 14, 2014
Steve Jobs threatened patent suit to enforce no-hire policy, according to court filing – January 23, 2013
Judge Koh orders Apple CEO Tim Cook to four hours of questioning in anti-poaching case – January 17, 2013
Apple, Google, Intel, Adobe, Intuit, Pixar, and Lucasfilm fail to get staff-poaching antitrust lawsuit dismissed – April 19, 2012
Court filing: Steve Jobs told Google’s Schmidt to stop poaching workers – January 27, 2012
Did Apple CEO Steve Jobs ask Palm’s Colligan to collude? – August 20, 2009
Did Apple and Google make an anti-poaching deal? – August 9, 2009


  1. Koh is so kookoo:

    She appeared annoyed that the lawyers for the class were taking the easy way out by settling

    Easy? Typically judges, including Koh, throw the plaintiffs in a room together and demand that they come up with a settlement. Going to court is considered a failure, the last resort for settling a dispute.

    But just because of Koh, now everything has to be upside down because she’s just in that sort of mood that day.

    Is this how justice is supposed to work? Obvious answer.

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