‘Billionaire making efforts to comply with the law’: Attorney who sued Twitter after Elon Musk started laying off employees

Elon Musk’s proposition to cut 3,700 jobs from the social media site or nearly half of its working population, has prompted litigation against Twitter Inc., which workers claim was executed without sufficient notice and in breach of federal and California law.

Shannon Liss-Riordan, the attorney who ‘pre-emptively’ sued Twitter Inc on the day of Elon Musk’s mass layoffs expressed her pleasure after she learned that at least some staff members will continue to be paid until January 4. “The billionaire is making an effort to comply with the law”, Riordan said.

The class action lawsuit was filed by the attorney on Thursday in San Francisco federal court. Later, the company notified its employees via email that staff reductions would begin Friday onward. According to the reports, Musk had agreed to cut costs at the platform he recently paid $44 billion for.

However, under the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, big corporations are prohibited from implementing mass layoffs without providing at least 60 days’ notice. Musk also meanwhile justified his decision following Twitter Inc’s big layoffs. “Unfortunately, there is no alternative when the firm is losing over $4M/day,” he remarked in a tweet. Those that left were given three months’ severance pay, “which is 50% more than what is legally necessary,” he noted.

The lawsuit seeks the court to issue an order requiring Twitter to comply with the WARN Act and restricting the company from requiring employees to sign agreements waiving their right to participate in legal proceedings.

“We filed this lawsuit tonight in an attempt to make sure that employees are aware that they should not sign away their rights and that they have an avenue for pursuing their rights,” Shannon Liss-Riordan, the attorney who filed Thursday’s complaint said.

Liss-Riordan, who filed a similar lawsuit against Tesla Inc. in June, said she “will be monitoring the situation at Twitter to ensure workers receive sufficient notice and compensation. “Billionaires are not above the law”, she was quoted.

“I am pleased that Elon Musk learned something from the lawsuit we brought against him at Tesla. We filed this case preemptively to make sure a repeat of that violation did not happen”, she said.

The company in the email to its employees had said that it was cutting 93 jobs in Los Angeles, 784 in San Francisco, and 106 in San Jose. “The affected employees will be paid all wages and benefits they are entitled to through January 4, the official termination date”, it added.

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