BANG staff photo Sungevity installers handle a solar panel on a Bay Area rooftop. A group of Sungevity employees say they were laid off without notice from their jobs at the bankrupt solar energy company this month and are seeking back pay.
OAKLAND — A group of Sungevity employees say they were laid off without notice from their jobs at the bankrupt solar energy company this month and are seeking back pay, court papers showed.
Andrew Adelman has filed a class action on behalf of himself and hundreds of other Sungevity workers, seeking 60 days of pay and claiming that the solar installation and software firm violated government rules that require 60 days notice of a layoff under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, also known as a WARN notice.
“Plaintiff received notice of termination by mail without 60 days’ notice as part of, or as the foreseeable result of, a mass layoff or plant shutdown ordered by Sungevity,” Adelman stated in the court filing.
Oakland-based Sungevity filed for bankruptcy on March 13 as part of an attempt to reorganize its finances and arrange its sale to a group of private investors.
The solar company also laid off 350 workers around March 9, a few days ahead of the Chap. 11 bankruptcy filing. The company listed both debts and assets in the range of $100 million to $500 million, Sungevity’s bankruptcy court filing stated.
Adelman, on behalf of the employees, stated that Sungevity failed to provide two months’ advance notice of the mass layoffs.
“As a consequence of such a WARN Acts violation, plaintiff and other similarly situated employees of Sungevity seek their statutory remedies, as well as unpaid wages such as accrued vacation pay missing from their final paychecks,” according to Adelman’s court filing.
The employee class action proceeding listed 336 workers whom Sungevity dismissed on March 9. That included 160 workers in Oakland, 57 employees in Kansas City and 119 remote employees who reported either to Oakland or Kansas City, the court papers showed.
“Sungevity failed to pay Plaintiff and each of the Class Members their respective wages, salary, commissions, bonuses, accrued vacation and personal time off for 60 days following their respective terminations, and failed to make the pension and 401(k) contributions and provide employee benefits under COBRA for 60 days from and after the dates of their respective terminations,” the employee court filing claimed.