For the first time, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals adopted a test to determine whether or not a meal break is compensable under the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA"), our nation's federal wage and hour legislation.
Recently, in a multidistrict litigation, SMX LLC ("SMX"), one of the staffing agencies that was sued along with Amazon.com, LLC ("Amazon") as joint employers, agreed to settle its claims for $3.7 million that alleged that SMX failed to pay workers for time spent going through anti-theft screening. In re: Amazon.com Inc., Fulfillment Center Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Wage and Hour Litigation, No. 3:14-md-02504 (W.D. Ky. 2014). The class includes employees who were hired by SMX and worked at an Amazon warehouse in California from October 1, 2012 until the present. Although the settlement will resolve most of the California workers' claims, some remain, including claims against Amazon affiliate, Golden State FC LLC.
In a recent blog post, we began discussing the numerous lawsuits being waged against Tyson Foods related to allegations that the company continues to violate provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act and engage in time-keeping practices which essentially amount to wage theft. We began discussing the 2007 lawsuit which was filed by some 3,000 low-income workers from one of the company's food processing plants who were granted class action status in their battle to recover wages which they assert the company failed to pay them.
There is power in numbers and that's one of the main reasons why the preservation of class action lawsuits among wronged employees is so important. Collectively, employees who are granted class action status have a much louder voice than any one or handful of employees acting alone.
From a very young age, we're all taught important lessons related to being able to discern right from wrong and fair from unfair. We're taught that telling lies, cheating and treating others unfairly is wrong and that, in everything we do, we should consider how our actions affect the lives of others.
This is a follow up on our previous post, "Attorney for plaintiffs in Uber employment misclassification suit seeks class-action status." On September 1, 2015, U.S. District Judge Edward M. Chen of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California issued an order certifying a class of California drivers who allege that Uber Technologies Inc. ("Uber") misclassified them as independent contractors.
In cities and towns across the United States, millions of Americans are barely getting by. For those individuals who earn minimum wage, every dollar must be budgeted and spent to afford basic necessities like housing, food, clothing and transportation. In cases where an individual is supporting a family, it requires a lot of ingenuity to stretch every dollar to make it until the next paycheck.
A May 7 New York Times expose last spring shed light on activities of rampant wage theft within the U.S. nail salon industry. Almost exclusively, the workers who are exploited are immigrants from Asian countries who speak little to no English and have little to no understanding about U.S. labor laws, especially those pertaining to wages.
An employee's wages generally make up a very big part of their financial lifeblood. How much in wages they receive can impact a variety of aspects of their life such as what sorts of expenses they can take on, what sorts of things they are able to do for their family and what sorts of long-term financial goals they can realistically pursue. Thus, one of the things employees generally care greatly about is getting paid fairly for the hard work that they do. Consequently, an employee can feel very troubled when they come across things that make them suspect that their employer may be violating wage and hour laws and not paying employees as much as they should.
Previously, an individual who was in need of transportation had to look up and call the number of a cab service who then dispatched a taxi driver to a customer's location. Today, ride-share car services like Uber and Lyft are taking the place of traditional taxi services and drivers by connecting people in need of transportation with motor vehicle owners in their area via an app-based system.