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Ignore an overtime lawsuit, hand a win to workers

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in Human Resources,Overtime Labor Laws

Can’t convince management that they shouldn’t ignore an overtime lawsuit? Share this horror story.

Recent case: Miguel and several other hourly workers sued, claiming they were owed overtime for working more than 40 hours per week stocking shelves at Mis Amigos Meat Market. Meanwhile, the supermarket, apparently in financial distress, filed for bankruptcy. However, the store didn’t disclose the alleged unpaid wages in its bankruptcy filing. Once its other debts were discharged, the judge in Miguel’s case reminded the company’s owners that they needed to respond to the lawsuit. They didn’t.

That’s when the judge ruled that the workers automatically won the case. The court calculated the un­­paid overtime and ordered the owners to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid wages, penalties and attorneys’ fees. (Valasco, et al., v. Mis Amigos Meat Market, No. 2:08-cv-0520, ED CA, 2013)

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