NFIB Files Amicus Brief in New York Private Right of Action Case

Date: May 02, 2022

Grant v. Global Aircraft Dispatch concerns Section 191 of the New York Labor Law

NEW YORK, N.Y. (May 2, 2022)NFIB filed an amicus brief in the case Grant v. Global Aircraft Dispatch, Inc. at the New York Supreme Court Appellate Division Second Department. The brief argues that Section 191 of the New York Labor Law, which requires employers to pay “manual workers” on a weekly basis, does not create a private right of action. In doing so, it argues that a 2019 First Department Appellate Division case finding a private right of action in the same Section, has resulted in frivolous litigation for small businesses.

“New York small businesses are being unfairly targeted,” said Karen Harned, Executive Director of NFIB’s Small Business Legal Center. “Small employers are managing various challenges and these expensive lawsuits only hurt the New York economy.”

“The New York State Legislature did not intend for Section 191 to be enforced by attorneys rather than the state’s Department of Labor,” said Ashley Ranslow, NFIB New York State Director. “Small businesses simply cannot afford the costs associated with taking these cases to trial and are falling prey to plaintiffs’ attorneys’ punitive litigation tactics. We are hopeful the Court will provide better clarity and allow the Department of Labor to return to enforcing Section 191.”

NFIB’s amicus brief argues three main points: 1) the New York Legislature expressly gives the New York Department of Labor the authority to enforce the law, not private parties, 2) small businesses are being targeted with a floodgate of new lawsuits, and 3) the liquidated damages are overly excessive and wrong.

NFIB filed the amicus brief with the Retail Litigation Center, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Retail Federation, the Restaurant Law Center, the New York State Restaurant Association, the Business Council of New York State, and the Business Council of Westchester. NFIB filed an amicus brief in a similar case at the United States District Court, Northern District of New York in Bridget Mabe v. Wal-Mart Associates.

The NFIB Small Business Legal Center protects the rights of small business owners in the nation’s courts. NFIB is currently active in more than 40 cases in federal and state courts across the country and in the U.S. Supreme Court.

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