"My colleagues at Lucasfilm and I applied our skills, knowledge, and creativity to make the company an industry leader,"stated Mr. Hariharan. "It' disappointing that, while we were working hard to make terrific products that resulted in enormous profits for Lucasfilm, senior executives of the company cut deals with other premiere high tech companies to eliminate competition and cap pay for skilled employees."
The complaint alleges the conspiracy among defendants consisted of (1) agreements not to actively recruit each other' employees; (2) agreements to provide notification when making an offer to another' employee (without the knowledge or consent of that employee); and (3) agreements to cap pay packages offered to prospective employees at the initial offer.
Starting in 2005 with Lucasfilm and Pixar, and continuing until at least 2009 with all defendants, the companies entered into "No Solicitation"agreements with knowledge of the overall conspiracy and with the intent to reduce employee compensation. As additional companies joined the conspiracy, competition among participating companies for skilled labor decreased. Compensation of defendants' employees was less than what would have prevailed in a properly functioning labor market where employers compete for workers.
The complaint for damages follows an investigation last year by the United States Department of Justice into similar misconduct by defendants. After that investigation was made public, defendants agreed to end the anticompetitive agreements. However, no compensation was provided to employees of defendants. This class action was filed to seek lost pay for the employees who were targeted by defendants' conspiracy.
The lawsuit was filed in California Superior Court in Alameda County. Mr. Hariharan seeks to represent a nationwide class of all employees who were harmed by defendants' unlawful agreements.