Settlement Proffered in Conde Nast Intern Case

Courthouse News Adam Klasfeld
November 17, 2014

Conde Nast has agreed to fork over $5.8 million to spike a class action by interns who complained that they made “a dollar a day, if that.”

Attorneys for the interns urged a federal judge to endorse the deal in a 25-page memorandum filed on Thursday.

Lauren Ballinger, who worked at W Magazine, and Matthew Leib, who assisted editorial at The New Yorker, claimed in a July 2013 lawsuit that Conde Nast “relies on a steady stream of interns to perform entry-level work that contributes to its magazines’ operations and reduce its labor costs.”

They led a class of 7,500 interns alleging violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

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The payouts range from $700 to $1,900 per intern, depending on the type of internship and whether it included a stipend, according to the memo.

Outten & Golden attorney Rachel Bien, representing the interns, called the settlement “fair, reasonable and adequate.”
The deal will “avoid significant expense and delay, and instead ensure recovery for the class,” she said. “Although plaintiffs believe their case is strong, it is subject to risk,” Bien’s memo states.

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