X Corp agrees to try to settle lawsuits over mass layoffs after Musk takeover

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SAN FRANCISCO – Billionaire Elon Musk’s X Corp has agreed to try to settle claims by thousands of former Twitter employees who say they were cheated of severance pay, according to a memo by a lawyer for the workers seen by Bloomberg News.

“After 10 months of pressing them in every direction, we have succeeded in getting Twitter to the table,” lawyer Shannon Liss-Riordan wrote in the memo to her clients, which was obtained from a former Twitter employee who declined to be identified disclosing confidential information.

“Twitter wants to mediate with us in a global attempt to settle all claims we have filed,” said Ms Liss-Riordan.

The company formerly known as Twitter has been accused in multiple suits of numerous labour and workplace violations, including failing to pay severance to thousands of workers fired late in 2022 after Mr Musk’s US$44 billion (S$60 billion) acquisition of the social media platform.

Almost 2,000 former Twitter employees have resorted to fighting their claims in arbitration as the company has demanded, but Ms Liss-Riordan has complained in court filings that Twitter has not shown up.

X is complying with a court order to mediate, a person familiar with the matter said, asking not to be identified discussing private information.

The private negotiations with a mediator are set for Dec 1 and Dec 2, according to Ms Liss-Riordan’s memo.

“We are very proud to be representing nearly 2,000 former Twitter employees, in individual arbitrations, as well as more than a dozen class action lawsuits in court,” Ms Liss-Riordan said in a statement on Wednesday night. “We are working hard to recover what they are owed.”

She declined to elaborate or comment specifically on the scheduled mediation.

A San Francisco federal judge ruled in January that workers who filed one of the earliest challenges to Twitter over severance pay were obligated under their contracts to go through arbitration, in which private judges resolve disputes in closed-door hearings. BLOOMBERG

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