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2/2009 - JXD Law Firm successfully represented Watts Corp. in collective labor litigation involving multiple parties and prevailed in all 43 cases


    On November 6, 2007, Watts Industry Group of US requested that JXD, on urgent basis, represent its affiliate Watts Water Heating Technology (Taizhou) Co. Ltd. (Taizhou Co.) in a labor litigation case involving 43 parties.  The disputes arose when some leaders锟斤拷?positions in Taizhou Co. were reshuffled.  The disgruntled leaders instigated and rallied the employees of the company to demand that Taizhou Co. make overtime payments.  As a result, thirty-eight employees resorted to arbitration, thirty-four employees demanded overtime payments, and thirteen employees opted for termination of the labor contract with Taizhou Co. with compensation.

    On the same date we accepted the case, we promptly dispatched our lawyers to Taizhou to conduct comprehensive investigations, review company rules, collect and analyze evidence, and review laws and case precedents.  Our lawyers then developed and adopted a litigation strategy based on the argument that 鈥渙vertime payment is incorporated in the wages锟斤拷?  Throughout the litigation process, our lawyers had not only consulted with the arbitration tribunals and the courts, but also maintained an effective communication channel with the employees and assuaged their hostility towards Taizhou Co.

    The litigation, which has taken fourteen months to conclude, was arbitrated by Taizhou Labor Arbitration Tribunal, tried in Taizhou Yuhuan County People鈥檚 court as the first instance, and tried in Taizhou Intermediate People鈥檚 Court as the final instance.  In the arbitration and the court trials of all instances, the arbitrating committee and the trial committees all accepted our lawyers锟斤拷?argument that the 鈥渙vertime payment is incorporated in the wages锟斤拷? and rejected the employees锟斤拷?demands for overtime payments.

    Had Taizhou Co. failed in this collective litigation, thousands of other employees of Taizhou Co. may file similar complaints which may cause huge loss to Taizhou Co.  Employees of other enterprises in Taizhou District may follow suit and file similar complaints which will undermine the stability of the relationship between the labor and the management in the district.  With the recent promulgation of the PRC Labor Contract Law, the successful outcome of this litigation has set a good example of strategy development in litigating labor disputes and established a valuable precedent for the trial and adjudication of similar cases in the future.

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