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New York settles with former nursing home exec over excessive pay

New York’s Attorney General announced settlement terms this week with a former executive at two nursing homes operating in the state on charges she misappropriated funds to her, her family’s, and friend’s financial gain.

Ruby Weston will pay $871,000 as part of the settlement terms, according to a report at LegalNewsline.com on a statement from AG Eric Schneiderman. Weston was the former administrator at Marcus Garvey Nursing Home and Ruby Weston Manor and was accused of breaking her “fiduciary responsibilities” to both organizations. Weston took an “excessive” salary during her time at the helm of Marcus Garvey Nursing Home – reaching a pinnacle of $500,000 in a single year – and also awarded nursing home contracts to her son, who operated a computer consulting firm, without accepting bids from others. She set her own salary.

Furthering her ability to defraud Marcus Garvey Nursing Home, to which she must repay $821,000 as part of the settlement, Weston appointed a personal friend to serve as the head of the board of directors of both not-for-profit corporations. More New York settles with former nursing home exec over excessive pay

Wal-Mart Subcontractor Sued over Overtime Wages

Employees of Schneider Logistics Transloading & Distribution Inc., have filed a class action lawsuit against the company alleging it routinely failed to pay overtime to its workers.

According to the lawsuit, Schneider, which has warehouses across the country, required employees at three Mira Loma warehouses to give up their right to overtime wages. In a deal signed in 2008, employees were to work a 40-hour week through four 10-hour days. However, the lawsuit says the company did not follow the deal, instead assigning hours that ranged from 20-hours to 100-hours a week. More Wal-Mart Subcontractor Sued over Overtime Wages

Celebrity Chef Mario Batali Settles Tip Lawsuit for $5.25 Million

Chef Mario Batali and a business partner have agreed to settle a class action lawsuit brought by nearly 1,100 employees, including bartenders, captains, busboys, waiters, runners and others, for $5.25 million, The New York Times reported from a filing made in Federal District court in Manhattan.

The class action lawsuit claimed that Batali restaurants illegally confiscated part of their workers tip money to supplement profits, reported the AP. The lawsuit was filed against Batali and Joseph Bastianich in 2010 and said that each night, the restaurants deducted 4 to 5 percent of all tips made from wine sales, Reuters reports. More Celebrity Chef Mario Batali Settles Tip Lawsuit for $5.25 Million

Harper’s Bazaar Intern Files Wage Lawsuit

Xuedan Wang,28 has filed a class action wage lawsuit against Harper’s Bazaar magazine publisher Hearst Corporation in New York federal court alleging the company is violating labor laws by using unpaid interns to do work that paid employees should do.

According to the lawsuit, Wang, who also goes by the first name Diana, said that “Unpaid interns are becoming the modern-day equivalent of entry-level employees, except that employers are not paying them for the many hours they work.” Wang said she regularly worked 40 hour a week and sometimes as much as 55 hours a week. More Harper’s Bazaar Intern Files Wage Lawsuit

Ohio Subway Hit with Wage Lawsuit

The U.S. Department of Labor has filed a federal civil lawsuit against Subway restaurant owners Joseph and Tammy Hray of Hray Enterprises of Warren, Ohio, alleging the company violated labor laws.

According to the lawsuit, from July 21, 2009 and July 2, 2011, the Hray’s did not pay 68 of its workers the correct minimum wage, which at the time was $7.25 an hour. The lawsuit also says that 24 workers were not paid overtime, and that underage workers were permitted to operate trash compactors and bailers, which is a direct violation of federal laws and that twenty-one workers were not paid the minimum wage, and were denied overtime. More Ohio Subway Hit with Wage Lawsuit

Novartis Settles Overtime Lawsuit for $99 Million

U.S. District Judge Paul Crotty in Manhattan has tentatively approved a $99 million settlement with Novartis over a class action lawsuit filed in 2006 by 7,000 former and current sales representatives who claimed they were denied overtime pay. A final approval hearing is scheduled on May 31, 2012.

“We believe this settlement is in the best interest of our employees and the company,” Andre Wyss, president of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp., said in a statement. “We have been litigating this case for nearly six years and the company has determined that it is time to resolve these wage and hours claims,” Bloomberg Businessweek reported. More Novartis Settles Overtime Lawsuit for $99 Million

Supreme Court Allows Applebee’s Employees to File Lawsuits in Wage/Tip Dispute

Gerald Fast and over 5,500 other former and current Applebee’s restaurant bartenders and servers who worked for tips have filed a lawsuit requesting additional wages for the time consuming tasks of cleaning, and stocking, opening and closing the restaurants.

According to the lawsuit, restaurant employees who receive tips earn less than minimum wage. However, if employees work at least 20 percent of the work day doing general preparation and maintenance work, they should get paid full minimum wage. More Supreme Court Allows Applebee’s Employees to File Lawsuits in Wage/Tip Dispute

US Supreme Court to Consider Overtime Pay for Sales Representatives

The U.S. Supreme Court has decided to hear a lawsuit filed by two GlaxoSmithKline employees who argue that the Fair Labor Standards Act guarantees overtime pay to pharmaceutical sales reps. The Department of Labor has backed the sales reps, saying they never actually sell anything to physicians, instead they push doctors to prescribe pharmaceuticals, and are therefore outside the FLSA overtime pay exemption.

“Neither physicians nor patients can purchase or order pharmaceuticals” from a drug company sales representative, the lead class action plaintiffs wrote in their Supreme Court petition. “There is no direct link between a [pharmaceutical sales representative’s] promotional efforts directed to a physician and the actual purchase of a pharmaceutical product.” More US Supreme Court to Consider Overtime Pay for Sales Representatives

Brooklyn supermarket employees awarded $300,000 and union contract in wage dispute

Thirty employees of a Brooklyn, N.Y., grocery store have won a lawsuit they filed over unpaid wages and overtime and were also granted a union contract to protect them from further abuse.

According to a New York Daily News report this week, the employees at Master Food in Brooklyn worked upwards of 70 hours a week, averaging just $3.93 per hour for years, but did not complain because they felt “they didn’t know where to go.”

Earlier this year, the employees organized and filed a lawsuit against their employer, seeking compensation for lost wages, and in the end were also awarded a union contract. The employees were awarded $300,000 in lost wages and have contracted with RWDSU/UFCW Local 338. The union contract guarantees the employees of the grocery store in the future at least a minimum wage pay rate, regular raises, overtime pay, paid vacations and paid sick days.

In the Daily News report, several employees represented by the lawsuit said they worked at Master Food for years, working six or seven days a week, for very little money. One fruit and vegetable washer said he worked 72 hours a week for less than $400.

Several Brooklyn supermarkets have been the focus of similar lawsuits, the source indicates. This is the first deal struck which also offered a union contract. An advocacy group said, often times, a store owner will pay off the lawsuit against the suing employees and then hire a new group of workers and subject them to the same conditions.

Mira Loma Distribution Center Facing Federal Wage Lawsuit

According to Press-Enterprise, warehouse workers at the Mira Loma distribution center have filed a lawsuit in Riverside California alleging that Schneider Logistics and two subcontractors forced employees to work under a scheme that paid them for fewer hours actually worked, denied them minimum wage and overtime, and did not provide workers with detailed records of hours work or how their pay was computed.

The lawsuit seeks class action status and was filed with the assistance of Warehouse Workers United, a group that supports non-union warehouse workers at distribution centers. The three companies involved in the lawsuit are also being investigated by a state agency for wage law violations. More Mira Loma Distribution Center Facing Federal Wage Lawsuit