Teamsters Local 399 is sponsoring a lawsuit concerning your State Disability Insurance (“SDI”). Whether you know it or not, California law requires employers to withhold premium payments from the pay of California residents to “buy” SDI. SDI then provides California residents with weekly benefits in the event they are injured off the job. (Workers Comp Insurance covers injuries on the job). SDI also provides benefits to women who are disabled because of pregnancies and provides for paid family leave under certain circumstances. In Local 399’s mind, it is very good insurance to have, and it is cheap.
Cast & Crew, unlike every other payroll company, refuses to withhold SDI premiums from the wages of Local 399’s members who are employed here in California and then sent to a distant location in another state. This has resulted in the weekly benefits of at least three Local 399 members being cut by more than half, and forcing at least one into bankruptcy. Which is why Local 399 has decided to sue.
Unfortunately, Local 399 cannot sue in its own name; only its members (the actual employees) can sue. So Local 399 is looking for two or three members to join in the lawsuit to stop this practice. There will be little or no money involved for anyone who agrees to become a plaintiff (because everything should have been paid to California). But by being a plaintiff, you will help Local 399 put an end to this practice. And if the suit is successful, there is a slight chance that the court would approve a payment to the named plaintiffs as an “incentive” for having agreed to be the plaintiff.
If you have worked or are working on a production that (1) filmed at least part of the time outside of California and (2) on which Cast & Crew was or is the payroll company and (3) are willing to sign on to the lawsuit as a plaintiff, please call Jason Han in the office at (818)985-7374.