Hoffmann-Law Roche Inc. v. Sperling

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In Brief

A District Court may, itself, send notice to potential plaintiffs in a representative class action.

What Happened in Court

After the defendant demoted or terminated approximately 1,200 employees, Sperling, a discharged employee, filed an age discrimination charge with the EEOC on behalf of himself and similarly situated employees. During discovery, Sperling asked the defendant for the names and addresses of other similarly situated employees. After Hoffmann-Law Roche refused, the District Court ordered that the company comply with the request. On appeal, the Supreme Court affirmed the District Court’s decision and held that, in appropriate cases, courts may help facilitate notice to potential plaintiffs by sending notice, itself.