Lee v. Law Offices of Kim & Bae

U.S. DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
Employment

New York Law Journal

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District Judge Joseph Bianco

The Law Offices of Kim & Bae (K&B) hired Lee as an associate to open an office in South Korea. The sole federal claim remaining in Lee's 2011 civil rights suit against K&B was her Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) claim that she was not paid for her work managing the Korean office, her September 2007 work on the "Telson" case at K&B's New Jersey office, and work in New York in April 2009 in connection with the baseball player deal negotiations. The court denied Lee's FLSA claim and declined supplemental jurisdiction over state law claims. In dismissing FLSA claims premised on Lee's work in Korea, the court noted its March 14, 2012, order that she may not recover such unpaid wages because the FLSA's wage and overtime provisions do not apply to work performed in a foreign country. As to her work on the "Telson" claim, the court noted Lee's stated refusal to work on the case. Further, as an associate attorney Lee worked in a bona fide professional capacity for which the FLSA's wage and overtime provisions do not apply. Lee's April 2009 work was clearly that of an attorney. In denying Rule 11 sanctions the court found nothing indicating that Lee acted in bad faith. Further, the court's June 5, 201, order limited prejudice to defendants.

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