Tesla sued by former employees over 'mass layoff'

STORY: Former employees of Tesla are suing the company for laying off hundreds of workers without advance notice.

The two former workers who filed the suit said they were terminated from Tesla's gigafactory plant in Sparks, Nevada in June, along with over 500 others, and that the terminations were "effective immediately."

The workers allege that in the process, Tesla violated federal laws on mass layoffs, which require a 60-day notification period.

The lawsuit seeks pay and benefits for the 60-day notification period, and class action status for all former U.S. Tesla employees who were laid off in May or June without advance notice.

According to an email seen by Reuters, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said earlier this month he had a "super bad feeling" about the economy and that Tesla needed to cut staff by about 10%.

A lawyer representing the terminated workers told Reuters Tesla is offering some employees just one week of severance pay.

She is preparing an emergency court motion to try and block Tesla from getting employees released in exchange for just one week of severance.

Tesla, which has not commented on the numbers of layoffs, did not immediately respond to requests for comment about the lawsuit.

Asked about the lawsuit at Bloomberg's Qatar Economic Forum on Tuesday (June 21), Musk played down the lawsuit as "trivial," adding "Let's not read too much into a pre-emptive lawsuit that has no standing."