The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is a law that was put in place to protect all employees working within the United States. Among other things, the FLSA regulates the national minimum wage and overtime. In addition to this federal law, many states have their own laws to govern employers and make sure they are not taking advantage of their workers. Any employer conducting business within the United States must make sure that they are acting in accordance with both the FLSA and all relevant state laws.
According to a recent class action lawsuit filed by Mayra Casas, a former sales clerk for Victoria’s Secret, the popular lingerie company allegedly violated both the FLSA and California Labor Laws by mistreating its employees. Casas alleges that Victoria’s Secret scheduled employees to work, then revoked or cancelled that shift without informing the employee. In these instances, the employees allegedly arrived at work before discovering that their “call-in” shift had been cancelled. This allegedly cost the employees time and transportation costs which they would not have lost, had Victoria’s Secret allegedly properly notified them ahead of time that their shift was cancelled.
The lawsuit also alleges that Victoria’s Secret failed to pay employees for time that they spent working, for time lost to “call-in” shifts, and committed unfair business practices by locking employees in the stores against their will. Far from a one-time fluke, the complaint alleges that “employees who work a closing shift routinely find themselves locked in the store at the end of the daily operational hours and must await a manager to permit them to leave the store. Because this occurs after the employees have clocked out for the day, they are not compensated for the time spent under the employer’s control[.]”
Likewise, employees who worked the morning shift were regularly made to wait for a manager to let them in before they could clock in for their shift. The result is hours of unpaid time that employees were made to wait at the discretion of their employer.
Other retailers have faced similar wage and hour class action lawsuits from employees who have been made to wait in line to have their bags checked before their employer allows them to leave for the day. The courts have debated whether this constitutes time for which the employees should be paid, and so far, the general consensus has been that, as long as employees are being prevented from leaving the premises of their employer, they should be paid for that time.
The wage and hour lawsuit, filed on behalf of all current and former employees working for Victoria’s Secret in California, is seeking $37 million in unpaid wages and overtime. The class action lawsuit was initially filed in California’s Superior Court, but has since been moved to the state’s federal court due to the fact that the estimated damages exceed $5 million. This is in accordance with a law, which was put in place to prevent plaintiffs in class action lawsuits from forum shopping for a court that would be sympathetic to their side. Victoria’s Secret denies all of the claims and takes the position it did nothing wrong.
The Chicago overtime lawyers at the Chicago Overtime Law Center are investigating unpaid overtime claims against large retail chains such as Apple, Walgreen’s, CVS, Urban Outfitters, GAP, Abercrombie & Fitch, Limited, Forever 21, Macy’s, Target, JC Penney’s, Lowes, Marshalls, TJ Max, Victoria’s Secret, Nieman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Best Buy, Home Depot, Apple, Best Buy, Sears, K Mart, J.C Penney, Walmart and other retail chains for misclassifying employees as managers, erasing or altering time sheets or time records, pressuring workers not to report or record overtime, failing to pay for time spent on security checks, and otherwise failing to pay workers for overtime and other wages. If you are the victim this practice call us at (312) 869-4095 or contact us online.