Tech Companies Settle Case Over Alleged Collusion in Hiring
Lawyers for Apple, Google, Intel and Adobe say they have reached a settlement with some 64,000 technical workers in a lawsuit accusing the companies of colluding to avoid poaching from each other, which helped artificially control salary costs.
There are no terms of the settlement as yet, according to a letter from the lawyers to the judge hearing the case (which you can read below).
Update: Reuters is reporting that the deal calls for the companies to pay a combined $324 million which works out to about $5,000 per employee who’s a member of the class, before you consider legal fees. Payments to lead plaintiffs are usually higher in these cases.
The workers, who sued as a class, sought as much as $3 billion in damages in a case brought in a U.S. District Court in San Jose, Calif.
The case was notable for some of the emails from the late Steve Jobs and Google Chairman Eric Schmidt concerning instances when Google recruiters occasionally reached out to Apple employees.
In one memorable anecdote, a 2007 email from an annoyed Jobs to Schmidt prompted the firing of a Google recruiter “within the hour.”
Here’s the original letter to the court.