In addition to defining things like overtime and the minimum wage, the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires employers to maintain several other labor practices in order to make sure they are not taking advantage of their workers. For example, the FLSA requires employers to provide all their workers with detailed wage statements that list the pay period, the number of hours worked by the employee, the amount of wages earned, wages withheld, and wages paid. Employers are required to maintain records of all this information for at least seven years with the possibility of hefty fines from a court or a government body, such as the Department of Labor, if they fail to do so.
In addition to the FLSA, each state has its own laws protecting the employees that work within its boundaries. California not only has a higher minimum wage than the federal limit, but also requires employers to provide all their non-exempt hourly workers with regular meal and rest breaks throughout the day: one paid, uninterrupted rest break after every four hours of work and one unpaid, uninterrupted meal break for every five hours of work. For every day an employee does not take one of these breaks, for any reason, they are entitled to one hour’s worth of wages, in addition to all wages, tips, bonuses, etc. earned that day.
California labor law also requires employers to provide their workers with all the wages they’ve earned within a timely manner (72 hours) after their termination of employment. If an employee provides at least 72 hours notice prior to the termination of their employment, then all their wages are due upon termination.
Dave & Buster’s recently agreed to pay more than $2 million to settle a class action wage and hour lawsuit that allegedly it failed to pay minimum wages, overtime, provide breaks, and required its employees to perform work off the clock, all of which are illegal under federal and/or California labor laws.
Of the $2.1 million settlement amount, $1.3 million will be distributed among approximately 2,350 employees. That’s an average claim amount of $560 per class member, although the actual amount each individual will receive will depend on the number of hours they worked within the class period.
Of the rest of the money, $700,000 has been set aside to cover the fees for the plaintiffs’ attorneys, $25,000 for their litigation costs and expenses, $7,500 will be paid to the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency in accordance with the Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act. Cheris Nunnally, the named plaintiff who filed the lawsuit, will receive $10,000 as an incentive award for filing the class action lawsuit. Finally, $40,000 will be paid to a mutually approved claims minister.
None of this is final. Settlements need approval from a court judge before the defendant can start making payments and put the matter behind them for good. The parties have just recently filed for preliminary approval of their settlement agreement. If it is granted, the agreement will need final approval before the dispute can be considered resolved.
Our Orland Park and Bollingbrook wage and hour attorneys and unpaid overtime lawyers and attorneys are intimately familiar with the issues that arise during wage claim litigation, and we know the laws that govern overtime cases well. Many employers misclassify employees as being exempt from overtime laws and pay workers salaries instead of hourly wages in order to avoid paying them overtime. Some employers mistakenly classify employees as exempt and others intentionally do so in order to circumvent the law. In either case, workers do not receive the wages they should, and a lawsuit may be the only way to recover their earned wages. We represent call center workers who are forced to work overtime but are not paid time and half wages.
Nationwide Consumer Rights is based in Chicago and Oakbrook Terrace. We represent clients throughout the country who have not been paid for the overtime hours that they worked. If you believe that you are owed overtime wages, contact one of our Chicago class action attorneys by phone at 630-333-0333 or through our online form.