Sandwich Shop Hit for Over $5 Million in Wage and Hour Lawsuit Settlement
June 28, 2011
In recent wage and hour news that our Riverside employment attorneys have been following, a well-known sandwich shop in New York City has agreed to pay over $5 million in back wages for minimum wage and overtime violations--the largest settlement in the New York State Department of Labor's 110 year history.
According to the state's Labor Department, between 2002 and 2008, Lenny's sandwich chain robbed over 800 low-wage workers at 11 city locations out of millions of dollars, forcing some employees to work grueling 12-hour shifts every day of the week, for a weekly wage of $275--which according to state wage and hour laws should have at least been $500.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo claimed that this multimillion dollar settlement sends a strong message to New York employers that employee exploitation will not be tolerated and that the Labor Department will continue to work hard to protect the rights of New York employees, to ensure that they receive every dollar that they deserve.
Under the terms of the wage and hour settlement, the employees will reportedly receive monetary payouts based on the number of hours that they worked. The Labor Department has received $1 million in a down payment from the sandwich shop, and the remaining $4 million will be paid out over the next two years, with another $100,000 to be paid in penalties.
One of the former employees described his working conditions as being horrible, while he was doing food prep and deliveries for the sandwich shop. He claimed that he worked from 6 in the morning until 5 in the evening and was only paid $275. Any tips that he received were kept by the management.
Under the New York State Minimum Wage Act, employers must pay employees at least $7.25 an hour. Employees covered under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), should receive at least the minimum wage of $7.25 for all hours worked, plus one-half their regular compensation rate for any hours worked over forty hours in a week, including incentive pay, commissions and bonuses.
In Orange County, California, contact Howard Law, PC today for a free consultation about your labor and employment rights. Call toll-free at 1-800-872-5925.
Lenny's hit for $5M, New York Post, June 15, 2011
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