Published on:

CarMax Sued For Allegedly Misclassifying its Auto Buyers as Management Employees to Avoid Paying Overtime


Misclassification of employees is a problem seen more and more often in the workplace these days. Recently, the used car retailer, CarMax, has come under fire for allegedly engaging in this illegal practice. The company allegedly misclassified its auto buyers as exempt from overtime.

The buyers however, are allegedly not professionals using their own knowledge and experience to make judgments on their purchases for CarMax. Instead, they allegedly merely collect information on used vehicles for entry into the computer system so that appraisals can be calculated. They allegedly must carefully adhere to CarMax’s detailed policies and practices and follow step-by-step procedures. Because of this, they allege they can be classified as neither professionals, executives, nor administrators, which are the three categories that the Federal Labor Standards Act (FLSA) provides for qualifying for overtime exemption.

In order to fit into the professional qualification, an employee must have a particular set of skills or training which is necessary for them to perform their job. Since the car buyers merely collected information and followed CarMax’s rules, rather than making their own decisions, they do not qualify for the professional classification. For the executive category, an employee must have other workers who directly report to them. The auto buyers do not oversee or manage any other employees and so they do not fit into this category. If an employee directly supports an executive, then that person could qualify for the administrative category and thereby qualify for overtime exemption. The car buyers however, did not directly support any executives and therefore do not fit into the administrative category.

The lawsuit alleges that, because of their large workload, which included regularly traveling to and attending car auctions, the buyers worked a significant amount of overtime on a weekly basis. Mike Luchini, one of the plaintiffs, alleged that the car buyers worked “through early mornings, meal times, and late evenings” for CarMax.

Hourly, non-exempt employees are entitled to one and one-half times their normal hourly rate for each hour of overtime worked in excess of eight hours a day or forty hours a week and double their normal hourly rate of pay for each hour worked in excess of twelve hours in a day. Additionally, they are entitled to meal and rest breaks. This includes an uninterrupted one-half hour break for each five hours of work. If an employee does not take this break for any reason, the employer is required to compensate the worker with the equivalent of one hour of the employee’s regular hourly rate for each day that a break is missed.

The Chicago overtime lawyers at the Chicago Overtime Law Center are investigating unpaid overtime claims against large corporations such as CarMax and other auto dealer chains chains for misclassifying employees as managers, erasing or altering time sheets or time records, pressuring workers not to report or record overtime, 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.

The Illinois overtime attorneys at the Chicago Overtime Law Center have decades of experience fighting for wage earner’s rights. We have a team of overtime attorneys who focus on nationwide class action lawsuits and work out of Chicago and Oak Brook offices and prosecute claims for workers all over the Chicago area including Schaumburg and Mount Prospect. We protect unpaid workers who haven’t received overtime throughout the Chicago area including in DuPage, Kane and Cook Counties.

Our Orland Park and Skokie overtime lawyers 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.

The Chicago Overtime Law Center is based in Chicago, and represents 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 (312) 869-4095 or through our online form.