Rachel M. Bien - Class Action Employment Lawyer Los Angeles, CA

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Rachel Bien

Partner
San Francisco Office
(415) 638-8800

About

RACHEL BIEN, is a Partner at Outten & Golden LLP in Los Angeles, California, and a Co-Chair of its Class & Collective Action Practice Group.

Ms. Bien is an experienced litigator who has recovered millions of dollars in unpaid wages on behalf of her clients.  She has represented tens of thousands of workers across many different industries in class and collective lawsuits.  She was lead counsel in Glatt v. Fox Searchlight Pictures, Inc., one of the first cases to argue that interns should be paid for their work on behalf of a private employer.

Ms. Bien is committed to protecting workers’ rights under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and state and local wage laws.  She has litigated and successfully settled many cases involving workers who were “misclassified” by their employers as “exempt” from overtime protections or labeled as “independent contractors” and denied overtime pay and other benefits.  She has won motions against large corporations, and consistently advocates for interpretations of the law that advance the rights of all workers, including those who are most vulnerable to abuse.    

Ms. Bien is an active member of the employment law bar.  She is a member of the State Bar of California’s Labor and Employment Law Section, the National Employment Lawyer’s Association (“NELA”) and its California chapter (“CELA”), and the American Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Law Section. She speaks frequently on wage and hour topics. 
 
She graduated cum laude from Brooklyn Law School in 2005 and joined Outten & Golden LLP in October 2006 after serving as a Law Clerk to the Honorable Thomas G. Nelson on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

(*Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.)

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Bar Admissions & Professional Activities

  • Ms. Bien is admitted to practice in California and New York.

  • Ms. Bien is an active member of the ABA Section on Labor and Employment Law, where she is a Track Coordinator for the 6th Annual CLE Conference and serves on the Section’s Outreach to Law Students Committee, as well as the ABA’s Equal Employment Opportunity Committee. 

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Speaking Engagements

Ms. Bien speaks frequently on wage and hour and complex litigation topics, including joint- and co-employment relationships, class action settlements, mandatory arbitration and class action waiver issues, FLSA exemptions, and restaurant worker laws.

2017

  • Speaker: "Sucessfully Managing Large Cases," National Employment Lawyers Association, NELA Annual Convention, San Antonio, TX

2016

  • Speaker: "The New/Proposed FLSA White Coller Exemption Regulations," ABA Section of Labor & Employment Law, Federal Labor Standards Legislation Committee, San Juan, Puerto Rico

2015

  • Panelist: "Should the Law on Tipping Be Changed?," NYU Center for Labor and Employment Law, Panel on Tipping, New York, NY
  • Panelist: "Are Unpaid Internships Still Viable?," ABA Section of Labor & Employment Law, 9th Annual Labor & Employment Law Conference, Philadelphia, PA
  • Speaker: "The Evolving Definition Of "Employee," NELA Spring Seminar, Protecting Pay, Representing Workers with Wage & Hour Claims, Washington, DC
  • Speaker: "Uber Alles? Implications of the ‘Share Economy’," Institute of Judicial Administration, and Center for Labor and Employment Law, New York University School of Law, New York, NY

2014

  • Speaker: "Wage and Hour Update," Practising Law Institute, Employment Law Institute 2014, New York, NY
  • Panelist: "How to Effectively Maneuver Through the Ever-Changing FLSA Landscape," AMS and the New York Law Journal, Insights and Strategies on the Effective: Mediation of Employment Disputes, New York, NY

2013

  • Speaker: "Settlements in Wage and Hour Class/Collective Actions," Practising Law Institute, Employment Law Institute 2013, New York, NY
  • Speaker: "Department of Labor and Other Perspectives on Independent Contractor Misclassification Informational Session," ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law, Washington, DC
  • Moderator: "Where EEO and Immigration Meet: Law & Advocacy," ABA Section of Labor & Employment Law, National Conference on Equal Employment Opportunity Law, Savannah, Georgia
  • Panelist: "Collective & Class Action Issues (Plaintiff)," FLSA/Wage & Hour 2013 Litigation & Management, New York, NY
  • Panelist: "Will Work For Free: Breaking Down the Intern Economy," Housing Works, New York, NY
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Publications & Articles

U.S. Supreme Court May Ultimately Have The Final Word On The Future Of Unpaid Internships In The Private Sector

By William D. Welkowitz, Outten & Golden LLP partner Rachel M. Bien was interviewed for this article. (Reproduced with permission from FLSA Litigation Tracker, FLLTSR 2015:004 (Oct. 26, 2015). Copyright 2015 by The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. (800-372-1033))

EEOC Committee Reviews Workplace Diversity Issues

Justin Swartz and Rachel Bien, Section of Labor & Employment Law, American Bar Association, Vol. 35, Number 4, Summer 2007

Few doubt the merits of diversity in the workplace. Indeed, a host of organizational leaders from chief executive officers to top military brass have recently touted the importance of a diverse labor force. As a result, an entire industry has emerged, geared toward eradicating workplace inequality.

Many thoughtful ideas have made their way onto "best practices" lists that identify methods to increase the representation of historically underrepresented groups in corporations and firms. (See, e.g., Equal Employment Opportunity Committee Diversity Task Force web page, which links to several lists of "best practices," http://apps.americanbar.org/dch/comadd.cfm?com=LL104000&pg=2

Despite all of this attention, however, the challenge of actually achieving diversity remains. As Alexandra Kalev, Frank Dobbin, and Erin Kelly wrote in a recent article examining the effectiveness of employers' efforts to promote diversity, "We know a lot about the disease of workplace inequality, but not much about the cure." "Best Practices or Best Guesses? Assessing the Efficacy of Corporate Affirmative Action and Diversity Policies," 71 Am. Soc. Rev. 589, 590 (August 2006).

At the 2007 National Conference on Equal Employment Opportunity Law in Charleston, South Carolina, the Section's Equal Employment Opportunity Committee (EEOC) presented two panels that focused on efforts to increase diversity in private sector workplaces, including law firms. The consensus that emerged from both panels was clear: truly overcoming inequality in the workplace requires more than changing hearts and minds. It demands a structural, top-down approach with incentives for meeting concrete diversity goals.

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Awards & Recognition

  • 2018 Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Employment Lawyers

  • 2015-2019: Recognized as a Best Lawyer by Best Lawyers

  • 2017: Benchmark Top 250 Women in Litigation

  • 2013-2017: Selected as a Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers

  • 2011-2012: Recognized as a Rising Star by Super Lawyers

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