SNL Intern Lawsuit Ends With Resounding Lawyer Punchline

Outten & Golden sounds like the name of Saturday Night Live skit law firm. But it is in fact a real outfit headed by Wayne N. Outten and Anne Golden, with offices in New York, L.A. and San Francisco.

This week, the news from the class-action front for this company is indeed golden. From Dominic Patten’s Deadline report:

If everything is approved, the plaintiffs’ lawyers at labor-issues firm Outten & Golden will get $1.184 million from the settlement. Unsurprisingly, that’s a lot more than the plaintiffs will see. “Class Counsel will move for Court approval of the Service Payments of $10,000 to Plaintiff Monet Eliastam, $5,000 to Plaintiffs Alexander Vainer and Rheanna Behuniak, and $2,000 to Opt-In Plaintiffs Samantha Kurlander, Nicole Klepper and Jamaal Brown,” the filing of October 22 states. The rest of the cash will go to thousands of others who interned at NBCU starting on July 3, 2007 in New York and on February 10, 2010 in California. Those interns should expect to get about $500 each if they accept the settlement.

The Deadline comments are pretty interesting, highlighting a back-and-forth debate among industry folks as to whether these kinds of disappearing opportunities (Eliastam free-labored for SNL in 2012) are a legitimate way for people to pay their dues or abusive. This user may be right with their prognosis:

Not Worth it: Add me to the list of poor kids who had school, work and a couple of unpaid internships that kickstarted my career. It’s the only way to make the connections that the “rich kids” already had. With interns being paid we will for sure hire much less, and it’ll most likely be the kids that know someone…

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@hollywoodspin Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.
Publish date: October 24, 2014 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT