Scott Cole & Associates
Scott Cole & Associates is a California-based class action law firm. It was founded in 1992 by Scott Edward Cole. The firm is best known for employment wage and hour (e.g., overtime, meal and rest period, minimum wage) and consumer class action litigation and has represented millions of plaintiffs against hundreds of major corporations such as Coca-Cola and the Unocal Corporation and on behalf of consumers impacted by the massive 2017 Equifax data breach and purchasers of the Apple iPhone and Apple iPad.
|Major practice areas||Class action litigation|
|Founder||Scott Edward Cole|
|Company type||Law Firm|
Scott Cole & Associates was founded in San Francisco, California as the "Law Offices of Scott Edward Cole" in 1992, and moved to Alameda, California the following year. The firm started its practice with workplace discrimination cases and other employee and personal injury litigation. In 1994, the firm mobilized residents of Crockett, California, filed the first case and thereafter represented nearly 1,100 victims injured by the Unocal Corporation petroleum refinery in Rodeo, California. The case involved the airborne release of hundreds of tons of highly toxic and carcinogenic substances, and is the subject of the book entitled Fallout. A settlement of the litigation was reached in 1997 to pay $80 million to the plaintiffs. In 1998, the firm devoted itself almost exclusively to class action litigation, changed its name to Scott Cole & Associates, APC and moved its headquarters to Oakland, California. Its tremendous success, high visibility within its practice area and meteoric rise among the ranks of similar class action firms has earned it a reputation as one of the nation's premiere boutique legal practices.
Scott Cole & Associates has attracted considerable national media attention for a number of its employment and consumer class action lawsuits.
In 2005, Scott Cole & Associates represented more than 1,000 Rite Aid managers that were denied overtime pay and meal breaks, which resulted in a $6.9 million settlement. The firm represented United Parcel Service delivery employees in 2007 after the company allegedly violated state labor laws, which ended in an historic settlement of $87 million. Scott Cole & Associates also brought a class action suit against The Coca-Cola Company in 2007 for alleged employment overtime violations, ending with a settlement of $14 million. In 2016, the firm announced a major victory against ABM Security Services when the California Supreme Court handed down a landmark opinion clarifying the rules governing rest breaks and upholding the firm's record-setting $89 million judgment in favor of a class of security guards. The action subsequently settled for $110 million, an unprecedented result on such claims.
Since 2010, the firm has also engaged in numerous food mislabeling and assorted product false advertising cases. In 2010, Scott Cole & Associates filed a lawsuit against Apple on behalf of consumers of the iPad after complaints of outdoor functionality issues. In 2014, the firm filed a class action lawsuit against Whole Foods Market for allegedly using synthetic ingredients in baked goods labeled as "all-natural." The firm also brought a lawsuit against Hobby Lobby for alleged wage-and-hour violations of its employees, in response to which the company unsuccessfully sought to block the lawsuit.Throughout its history, the firm has handled hundreds of class actions against iconic companies such as Amazon.com, Costco, Kohl's, 24 Hour Fitness, Walgreens, and Wells Fargo, directly or indirectly affecting millions of consumers and workers nationwide, focusing on overtime pay, meal and rest break, minimum wage, unpaid business expense, and consumer fraud matters.
The firm was first recognized in 2010 by the Alameda County Green Business Program as a "Certified Green Business." It has also worked in tandem with non-profit organizations such as Working Wardrobes and Wardrobe for Opportunity to assist victims of poverty in re-entering the workforce. The firm has served local educational institutions such as Bentley School and Oakland Technical High School as a financial and supplies donor and sponsor, providing items such as special activity clothing and computer equipment. Finally, for years, Mr. Cole, the firm's founder, has made financial and pro bono (free) legal service contributions to animal rights and animal rescue organizations, as well as free mediation services to low income individuals.
- Rosenthal, Deborah (September 2002). "Back Pay or Payback?". California Lawyer.
- Associated Press (9 April 1995). "Health Problems Linger A Year After Toxic Spill". Desert News. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Hughes, Neil (27 July 2010). "New lawsuit claims Apple's iPad overheats easily in direct sunlight". Apple Insider. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Hallissy, Erin (15 April 1997). "Unocal Will Settle Suits for $80 Million / '94 toxic leak in Rodeo made 6,000 sick". SF Gate. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Zeveloff, Julie (5 October 2009). "Rite Aid Looks To Settle OT Class Action For $6.9M". Law360. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- "Scott Cole & Associates Announces Tens of Millions of Dollars Paid To UPS Delivery Drivers". Business Wire. 7 June 2007. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Zapata, Ron (16 February 2007). "Coca-Cola Settles Wage Suit For $14M". Law 360. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- "California Rest Break Laws Clarified: Employers Must Pay for On-Call Work". Business Wire. 22 December 2016. Retrieved 22 December 2016.
- "Scott Cole & Associates Says Apple iPad False Advertising Continues". Business Wire. 16 August 2010. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Scurria, Andrew (2 June 2014). "Whole Foods 'All Natural' Labeling Suit Gets Green Light". Law360. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Vehling, Aaron (28 October 2014). "Hobby Lobby Says Scott Cole Defied Court By Filing Wage Suit". Law360. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Quinn, Michelle (27 January 2010). "Employee Breaks Are a Growth Area in the Law". East Bay Express. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- "Alameda County Green Business Program Newsletter". Alameda County Green Business Program. July 2010.