Nerium “affiliates are employees” lawsuit dismissed on jurisdiction
John Harris’ lawsuit arguing Nerium affiliates were ‘denied proper classification as to employee status’ has been dismissed.
Harris filed his lawsuit back in May 2018. In the proposed class-action Harris argued that because Nerium affiliates were denied employee status, they were subsequently owed unpaid wages.
The Nerium defendants filed respective motions to dismiss, based primarily on jurisdictional issues, in June.
Despite the argument that 20% of Nerium’s $1 billion+ annual company-wide sales are attributable to California (2017), the Californian court ruled it does not have personal jurisdiction over Nerium.
As a company Nerium is headquartered in Texas.
The personal jurisdiction ruling was made in reliance of a Supreme Court decision (Goodyear Dunlop), which
articulated a more demanding standard for general personal jurisdiction, particularly with regard to corporate defendants.
Similarly Nerium’s recruitment efforts in California were attributed to affiliates rather than Nerium corporate, and were thus also rejected as grounds for exercising jurisdiction.
The issue of jurisdiction is important, because Harris’ lawsuit alleges violations of California’s Labor Code.
By granting Nerium’s motion to dismiss on January 25th the case is ended.
While it would certainly have been interesting to reach a legal conclusion on whether Nerium’s affiliates were indeed employees, unfortunately this isn’t that case.