Marine Link
Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Recruiter to Cooperate in Deal with Workers Suing Major US Shipbuilders

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

March 27, 2024

© Joseph Creamer / Adobe Stock

© Joseph Creamer / Adobe Stock

A maritime industry recruiter has agreed to work with plaintiffs and share worker compensation data in a lawsuit accusing major U.S. shipbuilders of limiting employee mobility, marking the first settlement in the case.

Attorneys for a proposed class of engineers and architects suing General Dynamics, Huntington Ingalls Industries and other companies disclosed the settlement with Faststream Recruitment on Tuesday in Alexandria, Virginia federal court.

The October lawsuit said the shipbuilders violated U.S. antitrust law by scheming to restrict hiring from each other in a conspiracy that suppressed worker pay.

General Dynamics, Huntington Ingalls and others have denied any wrongdoing and have asked a judge to dismiss the lawsuit.

UK-based Faststream, which was also named as a defendant, will not pay any money as part of its settlement. It agreed to share communications, surveys and data relating to compensation and benefits from 2000 to present for some naval engineers and marine architects.

The deal to dismiss Faststream from the case requires court approval.

Attorneys for Faststream and the plaintiffs had no immediate comment. The company did not admit liability. Representatives from General Dynamics and Huntington Ingalls did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Faststream focuses on the recruitment in the global maritime, shipping and energy sectors. The company was founded in 1999 and employs more than 100 people, according to its website.

The lawsuit said Faststream “abided by the no-poach rules agreed to by the defendants and facilitated unlawful information exchanges among the defendants that helped them enforce their no-poach conspiracy.”

Shana Scarlett, an attorney for the plaintiffs, in a court filing on Tuesday said the settlement provides “substantial” cooperation benefits, and “it avoids the risks, costs, and delay of continuing protracted litigation against Faststream.”

The case is Scharpf v. General Dynamics, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, No. 1:23-cv-01372.

For plaintiffs: Steven Toll of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll; Shana Scarlett of Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro; and George Farah of Handley Farah & Anderson

For Faststream: Nathan Eimer of Eimer Stahl and Lynn Brugh of Williams Mullen


(Reuters - Reporting by Mike Scarcella)