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United States District Judge Lucy Koh today approved a $415 million settlement in the Silicon Valley no-poaching case. The dollar figure comes after a previous $324 million settlement was rejected as being too low.
More than 64,000 workers are part of the case. The suit stems from a secret agreement among large tech firms like Google, Apple and Intel to not poach employees from one another. The effect of that sort of arrangement depresses employee mobility, and, therefore, wages.
Perhaps the victory that results here on behalf of the working portion of Silicon Valley is moral, but it still feels light. The dollar figure, before taxes and the like, is just under $6,500 apiece. The amount is based on listed worker’s in the suit individual base salaries between 2005 and 2009.
There’s no way to tell what each individual would be able to negotiate for themselves over the years, had the policy not been in place, but given what we know about technology salaries today, the settlement amount is paltry.
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