Case Results

The firm has received the largest jury verdict in U.S. history in a gender discrimination lawsuit; the largest jury verdict in a Title IX lawsuit; one of the largest settlements in a wage and hour matter; some of the largest whistleblower and False Claims Act (qui tam) settlements in U.S. history (totaling over $1 billion); and one of the largest Title IX settlements in U.S. history involving sexual abuse of students. The firm also routinely settles cases that result in significant monetary recoveries for our clients.

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  • $762 Million Settlement

    Whistleblower Settlement Against Biotech Company
    Qui Tam Settlement with Amgen
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a former employee-turned-whistleblower who accused biotech company Amgen of violating the False Claims Act by promoting off-label drug use and illegal kickbacks to promote sales. Sanford Heisler Sharp's work with the U.S. Department of Justice culminated in a $762 million global qui tam settlement.
  • $253 Million Settlement

    Gender Discrimination Verdict Against Pharma Company
    Novartis Gender Discrimination Class Action
    Sanford Heisler Sharp achieved the largest jury verdict in U.S. history in an employment discrimination case. A jury awarded $253 million after finding the pharmaceutical giant liable for gender discrimination in pay, promotions, and relating to pregnancy. The case benefited over 7,000 female pharmaceutical representatives.
  • $120 Million Settlement

    Whistleblower Settlement Against Pharmacy
    Qui Tam Settlement with Omnicare
    Sanford Heisler Sharp and co-counsel represented a general manager of an Omnicare pharmacy who blew the whistle on violations of the Medicare Anti-Kickback Statute and the False Claims Act. As part of the settlement, Omnicare agreed to pay $120 million.
  • $99 Million Settlement

    Overtime Settlement Against Pharma Company
    Novartis Wage & Hour Class Action
    Sanford Heisler Sharp brought a major wage and hour class and collective action lawsuit alleging that Novartis misclassified its pharmaceutical representatives and failed to pay them overtime that they were owed. Following a successful appeal in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit that restored plaintiffs’ claims, Sanford Heisler Sharp negotiated a $99 million settlement—one of the largest overtime pay settlements in U.S. history—that which resulted in over 7,000 sales reps receiving settlement payments.
  • $68.5 Million Settlement

    Whistleblower Settlement Against Office Supplier
    Qui Tam Settlement with Office Depot
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a whistleblower who alleged that office supply company Office Depot violated the California False Claims Act by overcharging over 1,000 government agencies for office and classroom supplies. The qui tam suit against Office Depot settled for $68.5 million.
  • $61 Million Settlement

    ERISA Class Action Against General Electric Retirement Savings Plan
    Sanford Heisler Sharp was the first to file an eventual nationwide ERISA class action against General Electric (“GE) that resulted in a $61 million settlement to resolve allegations that GE improperly offered proprietary funds to 401(k) plan participants.
  • $50 Million Settlement

    Qui Tam Settlement Against Navistar
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a former employee turned whistleblower who alleged that Navistar, a defense contractor, overcharged the Government in the MRAP vehicle purchase. The case settled in 2020 for $50 million, $11 million of which was awarded to the whistleblower.
  • $28 Million Settlement

    Overtime Settlement Against Tech Company
    AT&T Wage & Hour Class Action
    Sanford Heisler Sharp secured a $28 million settlement for AT&T managers who had not been paid overtime by the telephone giant. The settlement benefited thousand of employees and resolved multiple class action and collective action lawsuits filed in California, Connecticut, and Georgia.
  • $24 Million Settlement

    Sanofi-Aventis Gender Discrimination Class Action
    Bellifemine, et al., v. Sanofi-Aventis U.S.
    In 2007, Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a class of approximately 6,000 female sales employees in pay and promotion and gender discrimination claims against the pharmaceutical corporation, Sanofi-Aventis U.S. The settlement produced more than $15 million in monetary benefits plus the $13.4 million reverberating effect of a $2 million pay equity adjustment over a five-year period.
  • $23.5 Million Settlement

    Whistleblower Settlement Against Medical Device Company
    Qui Tam Settlement with Medtronic
    Sanford Heisler Sharp filed a whistleblower lawsuit alleging that medical device company Medtronic violated the False Claims Act by engaging in an illegal kickback scheme. Working with the Department of Justice and the Office of the Inspector General for the Department of Health and Human Services, Sanford Heisler Sharp negotiated a $23.5 million global settlement.
  • $22.865 Million Settlement

    Whistleblower Settlement Against Vitamin Importer
    Sanford Heisler Sharp and the U.S. Government settled a whistleblower action under the False Claims Act (“FCA”) with International Vitamin Corporation (“IVC”), a leading importer of dietary supplements, in January 2023.
  • $20+ Million Trial Judgement

    Trial Judgement for Victims of Pornography Website
    Jane Doe v. GirlsDoPorn.com Lawsuit
    In Jane Doe v. GirlsDoPorn.com, Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a group of 22 women who were manipulated and defrauded by the owners and operators of the website GirlsDoPorn. Sanford Heisler Sharp won rulings to preserve the women’s anonymity, and after a 99-day bench trial the Court awarded over $20 million to punish the wrongdoers and benefit the victims.
  • $19.5 Million Settlement

    Qualcomm Gender Discrimination Class Action
    In 2016, Sanford Heisler Sharp reached a $19.5 million settlement against Qualcomm in a gender discrimination class action involving a class of approximately 3,300 women and was reached before plaintiffs filed suit. The settlement included comprehensive programmatic relief to ensure female employees working in STEM and related positions at the company will have access to equal job opportunities.
  • $14 Million Settlement

    Sexual Harassment Settlement Against University
    Dartmouth University Title IX Gender Discrimination Class Action
    Sanford Heisler Sharp brought a Title IX alleging that tenured male professors in a science department engaged in widespread sexual harassment of female college and graduate students. Sanford Heisler Sharp negotiated a $14 million class action settlement for the victims.
  • $14 Million Settlement

    C&S Wholesale Grocers Overtime Wage & Hour Class Action
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represented C & S Wholesale Grocers employees throughout the United States with claims regarding failure to pay overtime. Plaintiffs successfully resolved their lawsuit for a gross sum of up to $14 million. All details relating to the settlement can be found in the settlement documents filed with the federal district court. All details relating to the settlement can be found in the settlement documents filed with the federal district court.
  • $13.75 Million Settlement

    ERISA Class Action Against Walgreen Co. Retirement Savings Plan
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a class of approximately 190,000 participants in Walgreens’ 401(k) retirement plan who suffered staggering losses in savings due to the company’s alleged failure to prudently monitor the investment performance of the plan.
  • $11 Million Settlement

    Energy Plus Consumer Fraud Class Action
    Sanford Heisler Sharp reached an $11 million settlement against Energy Plus on behalf of a class of New Jersey consumers who alleged that Energy Plus engaged in a bait-and-switch scheme that led to the defrauding and deception of thousands of people.
  • $11 Million Settlement

    Qui Tam Settlement Against Smith & Nephew
    Sanford Heisler Sharp reached an $11 million settlement against Energy Plus on behalf of a class of New Jersey consumers who alleged that Energy Plus engaged in a bait-and-switch scheme that led to the defrauding and deception of thousands of people.
  • $8.7 Million Settlement

    Cracker Barrel Race Discrimination Class Action
    David Sanford was lead counsel in a race discrimination class action suit against Cracker Barrel restaurants. The case concerned discrimination in pay and promotion, and also involved discrimination against African-American customers. The United States Department of Justice intervened in the case after five years of litigation and the suit settled for $8.7 million.
  • $8.3 Million Arbitration Award

    Arbitration Award in Silicon Valley Fraud Case
    Chen v. Innogrit Arbitration
    Sanford Heisler Sharp won an arbitration for a Chinese client who co-founded a Silicon Valley semiconductor company but was defrauded by his co-founder and wrongfully deprived of an equity stake in the company he helped build. Sanford Heisler Sharp proved breach of contract and fraud and won an award totaling over $8.3 million.
  • $8.2 Million Settlement

    Daiichi Sankyo Gender Pay, Promotion, and Pregnancy Discrimination Class Action

    On February 11, 2013, six current and former female pharmaceutical sales professionals filed a class and collective action gender discrimination lawsuit against Daiichi Sankyo in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, alleging discrimination in pay, promotion, and other terms and conditions of employment based on gender, pregnancy, and family responsibilities.

    On May 22, 2014, the Court granted conditional certification of a collective action under the Equal Pay Act, 29 U.S.C. § 201 et seq., the first in the Ninth Circuit. Following this, Notice was sent to nearly 1,400 current and former female pharmaceutical sales professionals.

    On August 28, 2015, the parties agreed to settle the class action and collective action lawsuit for $8.2 million. The amount of this Class Settlement was recognized as 2015’s fifth highest settlement of a private plaintiff employment discrimination class action lawsuit in Seyfarth Shaw’s “12th Annual Workplace Class Action Litigation Report.”

    In November 2015, Notice of the Class Settlement was sent to 1,500+ current and former female pharmaceutical sales professionals. The Court granted final approval of the Class Settlement on February 11, 2016.

    As a result of the Court-approved Class Settlement, 1,500+ women were provided monetary relief. The Class Settlement will also provide programmatic change within Daiichi, including requiring Daiichi leadership to receive anti-discrimination training and allowing promotions and salary merit increases for employees on leave, including maternity leave.

  • $8 Million Settlement

    Retaliation Settlement for Law Firm Partner
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a client who was fired from her job as a law firm partner after she accused the firm of discriminating against her. Sanford Heisler Sharp secured an $8 million settlement for our client.
  • $5.5 Million Settlement

    Google, Inc. Wage and Hour Class Action

    On January 27, 2016, a former contract worker at Google filed a class action lawsuit in the Superior Court of California, Santa Clara County, alleging that the company failed to pay contract recruiters and sourcers for all overtime worked. The lawsuit also named Urpan Technologies, one of the many staffing agencies through which Google acquires contract workers, as a defendant.

    Following the filing of the lawsuit, the parties exchanged extensive documents and data, retained experts to examine millions of timestamp entries, and engaged in negotiations regarding the merits of the claims and the scope of the class. On February 28, 2017, the parties participated in a full-day mediation with the preeminent class action and employment mediator, Mark S. Rudy, Esq. Over the following weeks, the mediator continued to assist the parties in negotiating an agreement, and on May 23, 2017, the parties entered into a settlement.

    Pursuant to the settlement agreement, Defendants will pay $5.5 million to settle the class claims following final Court-approval of the settlement.

    On June 20, 2017, the settlement was granted preliminary approval by Judge Brian C. Walsh in the Superior Court of California, Santa Clara County. Notice of the settlement was subsequently mailed to approximately 795 current and former contract workers who performed recruiting or sourcing work at Google. No class member objected to the settlement.

    On January 5, 2018, Plaintiffs moved for final approval of the settlement, and on February 2, 2018, the Court held a Final Fairness Hearing. On February 7, 2018, the Court issued an Order granting final approval of the settlement, and on March 2, 2018, Judgment was entered. Plaintiffs anticipate that settlement checks will be mailed to the Class in May.

  • $5.1 Million Settlement

    Qui Tam Settlement with Meridian Surgical Partners
     
    Sanford Heisler Sharp won a $5.1 million qui tam settlement against Meridian Surgical Partners LLC, an investor in an Ambulatory Surgical Center (“ASC”). The whistleblower, represented by the firm and the U.S. Department of Justice, alleged that Meridian violated the federal Anti-Kickback statute and the False Claims Act by paying unlawful remuneration to ambulatory surgical center (“ASC”) owners to physicians to induce referrals of patients to ASCs.
  • $5 Million Settlement

    Settlement for Pair of Law Firm Partners
    Sanford Heisler Sharp secured a settlement that exceeded $5 million for two law firm partners who experienced discrimination at their law firm.
  • $5 Million Settlement

    Sexual Harassment Victim at University
    Sanford Heisler Sharp secured a $5 million settlement for a client who experienced sexual harassment from a tenured faculty member whom she trusted.
  • $5 Million Settlement

    Discrimination and Retaliation Victim at Major Company
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a client who experienced harassment and retaliation at a prominent company. Sanford Heisler Sharp secured a $5 million settlement for our client.
  • $5 Million Settlement

    Fairfield Resorts Gender Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Class Action
    Wilson, et al., v. Fairfield Resorts, Inc.
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represented a class of women in a sexual harassment and gender discrimination claims against Fairfield Resorts Incorporated, a major resort and timeshare company. The case was settled on behalf of all female employees at Fairfield’s Nashville, Tennessee facility in 2006, with more than $5 million in damages and significant modifications to Fairfield’s internal policies and procedures.
  • $4.15 Million Settlement

    Qui Tam Settlement Against Medical Device Manufacturer
    Sanford Heisler Sharp brought a whistleblower/qui tam matter against AtriCure Inc., (“AtriCure”), a medical device manufacturer. Subsequently, AtriCure agreed to pay $4.15 million to resolve all claims against it. The Complaint charged that AtriCure violated the federal False Claims Act by using illegal kickbacks and an off-label marketing campaign to induce doctors and hospitals to perform AtriCure’s costly inpatient cardiac surgical ablation procedures rather than standard, and more effective outpatient catheter ablation procedures. As a result, the Medicare program faced substantially increased costs from AtriCure’s unnecessary and expensive procedures.
  • $4.1 Million Settlement

    Qui Tam Settlement Against Pathway Genomics Corporation

    WASHINGTON, December 30, 2015, Washington, DC — Sanford Heisler Sharp today announced that genetic testing giant Pathway Genomics Corporation has agreed to settle a qui tam suit and pay the United States government, 28 states and the District of Columbia $4.1 million.

    Sanford Heisler Sharp along with Aashish Y. Desai of the Desai Law Firm, P.C., represented Relator Monique Gipson, who sued San Diego-based Pathway Genomics in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California under the whistleblower provisions of the federal False Claims Act, the federal Anti-Kickback Statute, and the relevant provisions of the false claims acts of the states and the District of Columbia pertaining to healthcare fraud. Gipson was a former sales representative at Pathway Genomics with first-hand knowledge of the company’s wrongdoing.

    The whistleblower provisions of federal and state laws permit private citizens known as “relators” to bring lawsuits on behalf of the Government and receive a portion of the proceeds of any settlement or judgment.

    David Sanford, Chairman of Sanford Heisler Sharp said today’s settlement provides further affirmation of the key role whistleblowers play in ensuring transparency in government procurement at every level. “Relators like Monique Gipson are vital to the honest purchase of goods and services by government entities in healthcare and other important sectors,” Sanford said. “Every U.S. citizen owes Monique a debt of gratitude for ensuring their hard-earned tax dollars are not squandered on products or services that are tainted by illegal kickbacks and other fraudulent conduct.”

    Pathway Genomics is one of many new healthcare technology companies that provide laboratory-based genetic screening tests for a variety of conditions including somatic and hereditary cancers, cardiac health, diet and weight loss, carrier screening, as well as for estimating drug response to medications used in managing pain and treating mental illnesses. The company marketed its tests to doctors whose patients were covered by Medicaid, Medicare, and other federal and state government-funded health programs, including the Department of Defense’s TRICARE insurance program, and the Veteran Health Administration.

    According to the qui tam civil action filed by Gipson in April 2014, Pathway violated its contracts with the federal government, the states and the District of Columbia by offering physicians and medical groups a reimbursement program that induced and rewarded them for referring their patients to Pathway to receive genetic testing. Such reimbursements, inducements, and rewards explicitly violate the federal Anti-Kickback Statute and other applicable federal and state laws and regulations. Today’s settlement repays the government entities for services they had been fraudulently billed and paid as a result of the illicit kickbacks.

    The states involved in today’s agreement included: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, as well as the District of Columbia.

  • $3.3 Million Verdict

    Title IX Wrongful Termination Case
    Burns v. San Diego State University, et al.
    Sanford Heisler Sharp achieved the largest known jury verdict and monetary award in a Title IX case in U.S. history. Sanford Heisler Sharp represented women’s basketball coach Beth Burns, who was terminated by San Diego State University after she raised complaints about gender equity in athletics. A jury awarded over $3.3 million in damages following a four-week trial.
  • Ongoing Opioid Litigation

    Ongoing Opioid Litigation
    Sanford Heisler Sharp represents over 70 city and county governments across the nation in their claims against opioid manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and pharmacy benefit managers who created and contributed to our country’s ongoing opioid epidemic.