Education

  • University of California, Berkeley School of Law, J.D., 2010. Development Editor, California Law Review.
  •  Columbia University, B.A., History, magna cum laude, 2004. Phi Beta Kappa.

Admissions

  • California, 2010
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T: 415-433-6830
F: 415-433-7104
E: jyelin@rbgg.com

Jenny S. Yelin is senior counsel at Rosen Bien Galvan & Grunfeld LLP. She practices complex civil litigation in state and federal courts, with a focus on individual and class action employment law. Ms. Yelin has worked with numerous clients in the public and private sectors to resolve actual or potential civil litigation concerning employment discrimination and wage and hour violations.

She also has experience with First Amendment law, complex consumer litigation, public employee pension law, disability access compliance, intellectual property issues, special education law, mandamus actions, and appeals. Full bio »

vCard icon

Download vCard
T: 415-433-6830
F: 415-433-7104
E: jyelin@rbgg.com

Jenny S. Yelin is senior counsel at Rosen Bien Galvan & Grunfeld LLP. She practices complex civil litigation in state and federal courts, with a focus on individual and class action employment law. Ms. Yelin has worked with numerous clients in the public and private sectors to resolve actual or potential civil litigation concerning employment discrimination and wage and hour violations.

She also has experience with First Amendment law, complex consumer litigation, public employee pension law, disability access compliance, intellectual property issues, special education law, mandamus actions, and appeals.

Ms. Yelin is a trained mediator and a member of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California’s mediation panel. She mediates a variety of civil cases, including Americans with Disabilities Act and employment matters.

Ms. Yelin has a Bachelor’s in Arts from Columbia University in New York and a law degree from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law.

Before joining RBGG, Ms. Yelin worked in the Santa Clara County Counsel’s Office, first as an Impact Litigation and Social Justice Fellow and then as a Deputy County Counsel, where she specialized in affirmative litigation and labor and employment matters. Ms. Yelin also volunteers as a supervising attorney for the San Francisco Workers’ Rights Clinic operated by the Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center.

REPRESENTATIVE CASES
  • Olabi v. Neutron Holdings, Inc. dba Lime: RBGG and co-counsel filed an action in the San Francisco Superior Court under California’s Private Attorney General Act (PAGA) against Lime, a startup that rents dockless motorized scooters throughout the United States.  Lime classifies all of its “Juicers”–who pickup scooters off the street in the evening, charge them at their homes overnight, and redistribute them in the morning and without whom Lime could not operate—as independent contractors.  Plaintiff alleges that under California law, including the California Supreme Court’s recent decision in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court, all Juicers are actually employees.  Plaintiff further claims that Lime, by misclassifying Juicers as independent contractors, violates various provisions of California’s Labor Code regarding the payment of minimum wage, reimbursement for necessary business expenditures, and the provision of accurate wage statements.  Plaintiff seeks to recover civil penalties available under PAGA on behalf of all Lime Juicers in California. On September 9, 2019 the Court granted plaintiffs’ motion to coordinate all four statewide misclassification cases against Lime in San Francisco Superior Court.
  • Stiner v. Brookdale Senior Living, Inc.: RBGG and co-counsel filed a federal class action lawsuit in July 2017 accusing Brookdale Senior Living, the largest provider of assisted living for senior citizens and persons with disabilities in the U.S., of financial abuse and widespread violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”) and California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act.  More than 5,000 residents live in Brookdale’s 89 California assisted living facilities.  On January 25, 2019 the district court denied Brookdale’s motion to dismiss, finding the ADA applies to assisted living facilities.  Stiner et al., v. Brookdale Senior Living, Inc. et al.,  354 F.Supp.3d 1046  (N.D. Cal. Jan. 25, 2019).  On June 5, 2019 the district court denied Brookdale’s motion for certification of interlocutory appeal and reiterated that assisted living facilities are covered by the ADA . Stiner et al., v. Brookdale Senior Living, Inc. et al., 383 F.Supp.3d 949 (N.D. Cal. June 5, 2019).
  • Quinby v. ULTA: We achieved final approval of a $3.65 million settlement in a class action on behalf of 263 current and former store managers of ULTA Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance, Inc. (“ULTA”) stores in California.  We contended that ULTA misclassifies its store managers as exempt from overtime pay, even though they spend the majority of their time performing non-managerial tasks such as stocking shelves, working the cash register, and greeting customers.  Judge Orrick of the Northern District of California granted final approval of the class action settlement in January 2017.
  • Fry v. City of Los Angeles: We represent the Los Angeles Retired Firefighters and Police Association in a writ proceeding to restore adjustable retirement health benefits that the City of Los Angeles froze by ordinance in 2011. After prevailing in the trial court, we briefed and argued the case in the Court of Appeals. In 2016, the Court of Appeals ruled that the City Council should revisit adjustments to the health benefit annually, and remanded the matter to the superior court for further proceedings.
  • Castro v. Calicraft Distributors, LLC: We represent the defendants, a craft beer distribution company and its owners, in an action involving copyright and trademark infringement claims, as well as a related unfair competition claim.
  • Sunner v. Kenneth R. Turnage II General Contractor, Inc., d/b/a K2GC, Inc.: We obtained final approval of a settlement that included injunctive relief and payment of $297,000 in this class action in Alameda County Superior Court on behalf of 60 laborers for a Bay Area construction company and its owner.  The alleged violations included requiring class members to perform hours of uncompensated work each week and forcing class members to drive their own vehicles to perform company business without mileage reimbursement. Judge Hernandez granted final approval of the settlement in February 2017.
  • Ramirez v. Ghilotti Bros., Inc.: In this complex class action on behalf of laborers alleging wage and hour violations against a major construction company, we obtained final approval of a $950,000 settlement with injunctive relief for the class. We also defeated the claims of company supervisors who asserted they should share in the settlement, even though they had perpetrated the alleged wage and hour violations against class members. Before the settlement was reached, we obtained a conditional certification of Fair Labor Standards Act claims and a published decision striking all of the defendant’s affirmative defenses.   See Ramirez v. Ghilotti Bros., Inc., 941 F. Supp. 2d 1197 (N.D. Cal. 2013).
  • Former CEO v. Software Company: We successfully obtained a favorable confidential settlement on behalf of a former chief executive and major shareholder of a software company after hard-fought litigation involving multiple causes of action and a cross-complaint in Alameda Superior Court.
  • Employees v. National Retailer: We represented three individuals against a major national retailer in federal court. The employees alleged age and disability discrimination, as well as violations of federal and state medical leave laws. We obtained a favorable settlement for the clients early in the litigation.
  • Armstrong v. Newsom, 103 F. Supp. 3d 1070 (N.D. Cal. 2015).  Ms. Yelin is part of a team of attorneys involved in this statewide class action under the Americans with Disabilities Act on behalf of all California prisoners and parolees with disabilities.  Almost two decades ago, RBGG proved in federal court that California’s prison system and Board of Prison Terms were systemically discriminating against prisoners and parolees with mobility, sight, hearing, learning, mental and kidney disabilities. See Armstrong v. Wilson, 942 F. Supp. 1252 (N.D. Cal. 1996), aff’d 124 F.3d 1019 (9th Cir. 1997).  The team’s current work includes tackling discrimination in assignments to valuable jobs and programs in prison, improving the difficult transition from prison to parole, and facilitating access to education and programs for prisoners with learning disabilities.  The Armstrong litigation has resulted in a series of ground-breaking precedents, including rulings that the ADA does not permit state government agencies to avoid compliance by delegating responsibilities to local governments, and that prisoners cannot be held in solitary confinement solely on account of disability.
  • Coleman v. Newsom: RBGG represents a class of the more than 38,000 men and women in California’s prison system with serious mental illness. After a contested trial, the district court held that the prison mental health delivery system violates the Eighth Amendment and ordered systemwide injunctive relief. See Coleman v. Wilson, 912 F. Supp. 1282 (E.D. Cal. 1995).  The court determined that the constitutional violations remain ongoing in 2013 after the State attempted to terminate the injunction. See Coleman v. Brown, 938 F. Supp. 2d 955 (E.D. Cal. 2013). Through hard-fought litigation over the last two decades, RBGG has secured a number of significant systemic changes on behalf of the class, including reforms to policies and practices regarding the use of force against prisoners with mental illness, as well as the overuse and misuse of solitary confinement. See Coleman v. Brown, 28 F. Supp. 3d 1068 (E.D. Cal. 2014). On November 28, 2018, the Ninth Circuit issued two unanimous rulings affirming lower court decisions on behalf of the class.  The Court dismissed the State’s appeal of an April 2017 order because the district court had not granted or modified an injunction under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(a)(1) in requiring the State to comply with prior orders to transfer class members to inpatient care in a timely fashion, nor had it issued a final order pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1291 because contempt proceedings remained ongoing.  See Coleman v. Brown, 743 Fed. Appx. 875 (9th Cir. 2018).  The Court separately upheld a  October 2017 order on the merits, ruling that district court complied with the Constitution and the Prison Litigation Reform Act in holding the State to its twenty-four hour timeframe to transfer patients in mental health crisis to licensed hospital settings, as longer waits “create ‘a substantial risk of serious harm’” in violation of the Eighth Amendment.  Coleman v. Brown, 756 Fed. Appx. 677 (9th Cir. 2018) (quoting Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 828 (1994)).  These appellate victories ensure timely access to critically needed psychiatric inpatient hospitalization for the members of the Coleman class, and the State’s compliance with the inpatient transfer timelines has dramatically improved in the wake of the rulings.  For more information see Coleman v. Brown: Court Orders, Reports, Photos, Expert Declarations and Media Coverage.

Honors & Awards

  • Northern California Super Lawyers, 2016-2020 Rising Star

Education

  • University of California, Berkeley School of Law, J.D., 2010. Development Editor, California Law Review.
  •  Columbia University, B.A., History, magna cum laude, 2004. Phi Beta Kappa.

Admissions

  • California, 2010

Professional Experience

  • Panel Mediator, ADR Program, United States District Court, Northern District of California, October 2019 – present
  • Deputy County Counsel and Impact Litigation and Social Justice Fellow, Office of the County Counsel, Santa Clara County, 2010-2012

Community Service

Volunteer Supervising Attorney, Workers’ Rights Clinic, Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center

Jenny S. Yelin is senior counsel at Rosen Bien Galvan & Grunfeld LLP. She practices complex civil litigation in state and federal courts, with a focus on individual and class action employment law. Ms. Yelin has worked with numerous clients in the public and private sectors to resolve actual or potential civil litigation concerning employment discrimination and wage and hour violations.

She also has experience with First Amendment law, complex consumer litigation, public employee pension law, disability access compliance, intellectual property issues, special education law, mandamus actions, and appeals.

Ms. Yelin is a trained mediator and a member of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California’s mediation panel. She mediates a variety of civil cases, including Americans with Disabilities Act and employment matters.

Ms. Yelin has a Bachelor’s in Arts from Columbia University in New York and a law degree from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law.

Before joining RBGG, Ms. Yelin worked in the Santa Clara County Counsel’s Office, first as an Impact Litigation and Social Justice Fellow and then as a Deputy County Counsel, where she specialized in affirmative litigation and labor and employment matters. Ms. Yelin also volunteers as a supervising attorney for the San Francisco Workers’ Rights Clinic operated by the Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center.

REPRESENTATIVE CASES
  • Olabi v. Neutron Holdings, Inc. dba Lime: RBGG and co-counsel filed an action in the San Francisco Superior Court under California’s Private Attorney General Act (PAGA) against Lime, a startup that rents dockless motorized scooters throughout the United States.  Lime classifies all of its “Juicers”–who pickup scooters off the street in the evening, charge them at their homes overnight, and redistribute them in the morning and without whom Lime could not operate—as independent contractors.  Plaintiff alleges that under California law, including the California Supreme Court’s recent decision in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court, all Juicers are actually employees.  Plaintiff further claims that Lime, by misclassifying Juicers as independent contractors, violates various provisions of California’s Labor Code regarding the payment of minimum wage, reimbursement for necessary business expenditures, and the provision of accurate wage statements.  Plaintiff seeks to recover civil penalties available under PAGA on behalf of all Lime Juicers in California. On September 9, 2019 the Court granted plaintiffs’ motion to coordinate all four statewide misclassification cases against Lime in San Francisco Superior Court.
  • Stiner v. Brookdale Senior Living, Inc.: RBGG and co-counsel filed a federal class action lawsuit in July 2017 accusing Brookdale Senior Living, the largest provider of assisted living for senior citizens and persons with disabilities in the U.S., of financial abuse and widespread violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”) and California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act.  More than 5,000 residents live in Brookdale’s 89 California assisted living facilities.  On January 25, 2019 the district court denied Brookdale’s motion to dismiss, finding the ADA applies to assisted living facilities.  Stiner et al., v. Brookdale Senior Living, Inc. et al.,  354 F.Supp.3d 1046  (N.D. Cal. Jan. 25, 2019).  On June 5, 2019 the district court denied Brookdale’s motion for certification of interlocutory appeal and reiterated that assisted living facilities are covered by the ADA . Stiner et al., v. Brookdale Senior Living, Inc. et al., 383 F.Supp.3d 949 (N.D. Cal. June 5, 2019).
  • Quinby v. ULTA: We achieved final approval of a $3.65 million settlement in a class action on behalf of 263 current and former store managers of ULTA Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance, Inc. (“ULTA”) stores in California.  We contended that ULTA misclassifies its store managers as exempt from overtime pay, even though they spend the majority of their time performing non-managerial tasks such as stocking shelves, working the cash register, and greeting customers.  Judge Orrick of the Northern District of California granted final approval of the class action settlement in January 2017.
  • Fry v. City of Los Angeles: We represent the Los Angeles Retired Firefighters and Police Association in a writ proceeding to restore adjustable retirement health benefits that the City of Los Angeles froze by ordinance in 2011. After prevailing in the trial court, we briefed and argued the case in the Court of Appeals. In 2016, the Court of Appeals ruled that the City Council should revisit adjustments to the health benefit annually, and remanded the matter to the superior court for further proceedings.
  • Castro v. Calicraft Distributors, LLC: We represent the defendants, a craft beer distribution company and its owners, in an action involving copyright and trademark infringement claims, as well as a related unfair competition claim.
  • Sunner v. Kenneth R. Turnage II General Contractor, Inc., d/b/a K2GC, Inc.: We obtained final approval of a settlement that included injunctive relief and payment of $297,000 in this class action in Alameda County Superior Court on behalf of 60 laborers for a Bay Area construction company and its owner.  The alleged violations included requiring class members to perform hours of uncompensated work each week and forcing class members to drive their own vehicles to perform company business without mileage reimbursement. Judge Hernandez granted final approval of the settlement in February 2017.
  • Ramirez v. Ghilotti Bros., Inc.: In this complex class action on behalf of laborers alleging wage and hour violations against a major construction company, we obtained final approval of a $950,000 settlement with injunctive relief for the class. We also defeated the claims of company supervisors who asserted they should share in the settlement, even though they had perpetrated the alleged wage and hour violations against class members. Before the settlement was reached, we obtained a conditional certification of Fair Labor Standards Act claims and a published decision striking all of the defendant’s affirmative defenses.   See Ramirez v. Ghilotti Bros., Inc., 941 F. Supp. 2d 1197 (N.D. Cal. 2013).
  • Former CEO v. Software Company: We successfully obtained a favorable confidential settlement on behalf of a former chief executive and major shareholder of a software company after hard-fought litigation involving multiple causes of action and a cross-complaint in Alameda Superior Court.
  • Employees v. National Retailer: We represented three individuals against a major national retailer in federal court. The employees alleged age and disability discrimination, as well as violations of federal and state medical leave laws. We obtained a favorable settlement for the clients early in the litigation.
  • Armstrong v. Newsom, 103 F. Supp. 3d 1070 (N.D. Cal. 2015).  Ms. Yelin is part of a team of attorneys involved in this statewide class action under the Americans with Disabilities Act on behalf of all California prisoners and parolees with disabilities.  Almost two decades ago, RBGG proved in federal court that California’s prison system and Board of Prison Terms were systemically discriminating against prisoners and parolees with mobility, sight, hearing, learning, mental and kidney disabilities. See Armstrong v. Wilson, 942 F. Supp. 1252 (N.D. Cal. 1996), aff’d 124 F.3d 1019 (9th Cir. 1997).  The team’s current work includes tackling discrimination in assignments to valuable jobs and programs in prison, improving the difficult transition from prison to parole, and facilitating access to education and programs for prisoners with learning disabilities.  The Armstrong litigation has resulted in a series of ground-breaking precedents, including rulings that the ADA does not permit state government agencies to avoid compliance by delegating responsibilities to local governments, and that prisoners cannot be held in solitary confinement solely on account of disability.
  • Coleman v. Newsom: RBGG represents a class of the more than 38,000 men and women in California’s prison system with serious mental illness. After a contested trial, the district court held that the prison mental health delivery system violates the Eighth Amendment and ordered systemwide injunctive relief. See Coleman v. Wilson, 912 F. Supp. 1282 (E.D. Cal. 1995).  The court determined that the constitutional violations remain ongoing in 2013 after the State attempted to terminate the injunction. See Coleman v. Brown, 938 F. Supp. 2d 955 (E.D. Cal. 2013). Through hard-fought litigation over the last two decades, RBGG has secured a number of significant systemic changes on behalf of the class, including reforms to policies and practices regarding the use of force against prisoners with mental illness, as well as the overuse and misuse of solitary confinement. See Coleman v. Brown, 28 F. Supp. 3d 1068 (E.D. Cal. 2014). On November 28, 2018, the Ninth Circuit issued two unanimous rulings affirming lower court decisions on behalf of the class.  The Court dismissed the State’s appeal of an April 2017 order because the district court had not granted or modified an injunction under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(a)(1) in requiring the State to comply with prior orders to transfer class members to inpatient care in a timely fashion, nor had it issued a final order pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1291 because contempt proceedings remained ongoing.  See Coleman v. Brown, 743 Fed. Appx. 875 (9th Cir. 2018).  The Court separately upheld a  October 2017 order on the merits, ruling that district court complied with the Constitution and the Prison Litigation Reform Act in holding the State to its twenty-four hour timeframe to transfer patients in mental health crisis to licensed hospital settings, as longer waits “create ‘a substantial risk of serious harm’” in violation of the Eighth Amendment.  Coleman v. Brown, 756 Fed. Appx. 677 (9th Cir. 2018) (quoting Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 828 (1994)).  These appellate victories ensure timely access to critically needed psychiatric inpatient hospitalization for the members of the Coleman class, and the State’s compliance with the inpatient transfer timelines has dramatically improved in the wake of the rulings.  For more information see Coleman v. Brown: Court Orders, Reports, Photos, Expert Declarations and Media Coverage.

Honors & Awards

  • Northern California Super Lawyers, 2016-2020 Rising Star

Publications