In a recent development, Yellow Corp. is facing a lawsuit for not providing the mandated 60-day advance notice to nearly 30,000 workers before a mass layoff that started last week. The suit contends that this violation breaches the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, also known as the WARN Act. Subsidiaries named as defendants include YRC Inc., USF Holland LLC, New Penn Motor Express LLC, and USF Reddaway Inc.
This lawsuit comes at a time when the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, a union with collective bargaining agreements for about 22,000 Yellow employees, declared the imminent bankruptcy of Yellow Corp. The impending insolvency could potentially put to test the situations under which union contracts can sustain through bankruptcy proceedings.
One of the laid-off workers, Armando Rivera, a dockworker who was employed with Yellow in California for around 25 years, has sued on behalf of a proposed class of other laid-off workers. The complaint, in addition to the WARN Act violation, also alleges breaches of California’s and New Jersey’s state version of the WARN Act. Notably, the New Jersey law mandates a 90-day notice period and entitles Yellow workers in the state to additional severance pay.
Rivera, who also served as a union steward, claims that he and about 600 other Yellow employees at the same California facility were laid off the same day they received notice, with no prior written notice. The case, represented by Chris Loizides of Wilmington, Del., and Raisner Roupinian LLP, is titled Rivera v. Yellow Corp., and was filed on August 1, 2023.