Cases and Deals

Blank Rome Successfully Represents Penncro Asssociates in WARN Act Putative Class Action Suit

Blank Rome successfully obtained a final summary judgment on behalf of Penncro Associates, Inc. (“Penncro”), in a putative class action filed under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act of 1988 (“WARN Act”), which resulted from a mass layoff at a Bryan, TX, facility where Penncro laid off 157 employees but failed to provide a 60-day advance notice.

Though the plaintiffs had established a prima facie case, the court ruled that Blank Rome had proved that the unforeseeable-business-circumstance defense excused Penncro’s failure, and that Penncro acted in a commercially reasonable manner after learning of the termination of a contract from its largest customer—the circumstances of which the court deemed were caused by a “sudden, dramatic, and unexpected action or condition outside the employer’s control,” thus resulting in the mass layoffs at issue. The court also held that Penncro’s layoff notice was sufficient and issued within a reasonable time based on all the facts and circumstances.

For more information, please click here to read the legal decision from the United States District Court, S.D. Texas, Houston Division, on Mwarabu V. Penncro Associates, Inc.