A fair labor law case against Zillow that originally arose two years ago, Ian Freeman vs. Zillow, Inc., has come full circle.
On Monday, the real estate company announced through an SEC filing that it will settle what became a class action suit in the United States District Court, Central District of California, for $6 million.
When former inside sales consultant Ian Freeman first filed a complaint in November 2014, he alleged that Zillow “engaged in an illegal design to circumvent federal and state laws with the sole purpose of maximizing profits through a systematic scheme of exploiting and intimidating its employees to miss meal breaks, rest breaks and work overtime without compensation.”
The allegations therefore accused Zillow of being in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and California law with respect to certain inside sales consultants.
In February 2016, a U.S. District judge certified the Freeman case as a class action, opening the door for other former Zillow employees to join the lawsuit.
This week’s SEC filing confirms that Zillow agreed to settle the class action lawsuit in May 2016, but the settlement was only completed after the Department of Labor (DOL) conducted a a separate review of its labor practices.
Under the agreement, the real estate giant said it will “establish and maintain certain procedures to promote future compliance with the FLSA.”
Moreover, “Zillow has not admitted liability with respect to either the DOL settlement or the Freeman settlement,” the filing notes, and the company will not make payments related to the case other than those required by the class action suit.
This is not the first legal ensnarement that the real estate giant has settled this year. During a court-ordered conference in May, Zillow settled four lawsuits that accused the Seattle-based company of harassment and discrimination.
“We cooperated fully with the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) review of Zillow’s wage and hour policies,” said Zillow Group communications manager Amanda Woolley in an emailed statement.
“The DOL determined we already fulfilled our obligations to certain current and former sales employees through our settlement of the Freeman class action litigation in May 2016, and that we are not required to make any additional payments. By settling this matter, we are not admitting liability. Our people are our greatest asset, and we work hard to create an environment that is inclusive, rewarding and compl