Former employees of San Francisco’s defunct Heller Ehrman, which declared bankruptcy in December, are suing 179 former partners for $32 million.
The suit alleges that the firm’s shareholders failed to give the legally required 60 days notice of layoffs. They seek accrued vacation, severance cash, and penalties under the WARN Act.
The over 800 ex-employees are represented by Los Angeles-based litigation boutique Blum Collins.
Founded in San Francisco in 1890, Heller Ehrman LLP was an international law firm of more than 730 attorneys in 15 offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.
In September 2008, the firm encountered troubles after losing 15 intellectual property partners to Covington & Burling, which led to the collapse of merger talks with Mayer Brown. A total of 50 partners had left the firm in 2008. The firm dissolved in November 2008.