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Paul Hastings Secures Ninth Circuit Appellate Victory on Behalf of GlaxoSmithKline

February 14, 2011

Washington, DC (February 14, 2011) Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker LLP, a leading global law firm, announced today that the firm secured an important Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) victory on behalf of client GlaxoSmithKline in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

The decision is a significant one for employers, particularly pharmaceutical manufacturers, concluding that pharmaceutical sales representatives (PSRs) were properly classified as exempt from the FLSA overtime-pay requirements as outside sales employees. For 70 years, the pharmaceutical industrys sales model has been built on the belief that PSRs are properly treated as exempt.

Further, the Ninth Circuit rejected the Department of Labors contrary opinion, which was expressed in an amicus brief filed in support of the plaintiffs appeal. It also disagreed with the Second Circuits interpretation of the same FLSA exemption in an earlier case, setting the stage for a potential appeal to the United States Supreme Court. More broadly, the decision strikes a blow at DOLs use of amicus briefs as a method for announcing new substantive standards.

The appeal was argued by Neal Mollen and Barbara Johnson, both partners in Paul Hastings Employment Department.

Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker is a leading global law firm with offices in Asia, Europe, and the United States. We provide innovative legal solutions to financial institutions and Fortune 500 companies. Please visit www.paulhastings.com for more information.