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This Website is from an Attorney who Believes a Proposed Class Action Settlement of Sapphire Dancers' Claims is Unfair and Should be Changed to Pay them More Money
This website contains information that may be of interest to Sapphire dancers who worked at Sapphire after March 15, 2013 about a proposed class-action lawsuit settlement. This website belongs to attorney Leon Greenberg who believes that settlement is unfair to the dancers, is unlikely to result in any payment to most of the dancers, and should be changed to require Sapphire to make a more substantial guaranteed payment to the dancers. He is interested in hearing from Sapphire dancers who are class members and who may be willing to serve as “Objectors” to that proposed settlement and work to have that settlement made fairer for the Sapphire dancer class members.
The proposed settlement, if approved, will resolve the claims of the Sapphire dancer class members for any unpaid minimum wages that they are owed and for all fines and fees they paid to Sapphire. Sapphire is agreeing to pay the attorneys proposing that settlement, the Bighorn Law firm, up to $1,430,000. But the proposed settlement only requires Sapphire to make payments to the other Sapphire class member dancers who make a “claim” within 45 days of a notice being mailed to them. If a class member does not make a claim or exclude themselves within that 45 day period they will receive no payment and their claims against Sapphire that are part of the class action will be wiped out. As a result, it is possible, and in the opinion of Leon Greenberg overwhelmingly likely, based on a prior Sapphire dancers’ settlement, that Sapphire will actually pay the Sapphire class member dancers far less than the attorneys who are representing them.
A 2016 Class Action Settlement of Sapphire Dancers' Claims Resulted in a Payment of $2,000,000 to the Attorneys and Payments to less than 6% of the Sapphire Dancer Class Members
A similar class action settlement against Sapphire in 2016 resulted in the payment of $2,000,000 to the attorneys for a class of over 10,900 Sapphire dancers. Those attorneys included the law firm that employed one of the attorneys who is now proposing the current settlement. Under that 2016 settlement, five Sapphire dancers each received $25,000 and a total of $3,875,000 was “made available” to pay the claims actually submitted by the other Sapphire dancer class members. It has never been disclosed how much of that $3,875,000 was actually paid by Sapphire to the Sapphire dancer class members, but:
(1) Only 633 of 10,929 Sapphire dancer class members, or 5.8% of the class members, successfully made claims in the 2016 settlement;
(2) While notices were mailed out to 10,929 Sapphire dancer class members 4,134 of those notices were returned as undeliverable, meaning over 37% of those class members never received a claim form in the mail from that mailing.
Sapphire, and the attorneys representing the Sapphire dancer class, never publicly disclosed the amount of money actually claimed by the Sapphire dancer class members and paid to them by Sapphire. If it was equal to the 5.8% claims rate for the class members Sapphire paid the dancer class members a total of $224,750. If it was double that claims rate (the 5.8% of the dancer class members filing claims were actually entitled to 11.6% of the funds available to pay all class members because they had danced for longer periods of time at Sapphire) Sapphire paid those dancer class members a total of $449,500.
As the foregoing explains, while Sapphire under the 2016 settlement “made available” $3,875,000 to pay the dancer class members’ claims, it very likely paid only a minority of that amount to the dancers. Because it has never been disclosed what was actually paid to the dancers the attorneys for the Sapphire class member dancers may have received from Sapphire over four times the amount it actually paid to the Sapphire class member dancers under the 2016 settlement ($2,000,000 to those attorneys and less than $500,000 to the Sapphire dancer class members those attorneys were representing).
There is Time to Still do Something About the Current
but not yet Approved Proposed Class Action Settlement
In the opinion of attorney Leon Greenberg the proposed class action settlement of the Sapphire dancers’ claims is unfair (as was the 2016 settlement) as it will wipe out Sapphire’s legal liability to the dancer class members and provide very little actual benefit for the dancers. In his opinion, it is overwhelmingly likely that only a small minority of the class members (such as the 5.8% in the 2016 settlement — or even less) are likely to successfully make settlement claims. He believes the Court should refuse to approve the settlement and require Sapphire to make a commitment to pay a much larger minimum amount of money to the dancers, an amount they will have to pay even if only a small number of dancers come forward to file settlement claims. He believes it would be unfair for the Court to allow the settlement to result in the attorneys being paid twice as much, or more, than the Sapphire dancer class members.
Sapphire dancer class members have a right to object to the proposed settlement and ask the Court to not approve the settlement. If the Court refused to approve the settlement Sapphire would have to change the settlement to make it more favorable to the class member dancers or face a trial and a potential verdict that would require it to pay much more to the class member dancers. But the time to file objections is short — it is only 45 days after the notice about the settlement is mailed! That deadline for making objections will probably be sometime in September of 2021.
If you are potentially interested in being an Objector to the proposed Sapphire dancer class action settlement, and fighting to secure a fairer resolution of the dancers’ claims against Sapphire for yourself and the other dancers, please contact attorney Leon Greenberg for more information. You do not need to give your name and your communication is confidential. You can telephone 702-383-6085 or respond by email to leongreenberg at overtimelaw.com. Or click here.
About the Law Office of Leon Greenberg
Leon Greenberg has been representing workers owed unpaid minimum wages and other unpaid wages for over 28 years. You can find out information about him and his law practice at his website, overtimelaw.com, his office’s facebook page and his youtube channel. He has never represented employers.
This website sets forth the opinions of Leon Greenberg and those opinions should not be assumed to be established as facts or to constitute legal advice or legal conclusions of any sort; no findings of any misconduct or improper or unfair actions by Sapphire Gentlemen’s Club or SHAC LLC or by any attorneys mentioned on this website have been made by any Court or other agency. None of the information set forth on this page should be considered legal advice and no attorney-client relationship is formed by reading this page. Before taking action on any legal rights you may have you should always consult with an attorney about your particular situation and not rely solely on information from this website or from any other source. This website is for Leon Greenberg Professional Corporation, Attorney at Law, 2965 S. Jones Boulevard, Suite E-3, Las Vegas, Nevada, 89146 (702) 383-6085. This is an advertisement.