LOS ANGELES — A former processing worker for Sonoma County, California-based Petaluma Poultry recently filed an unpaid overtime class action lawsuit against the company claiming she and other employees were not paid for all their time spent on the job. Furthermore, the complaint alleges the defendant violated California wage and labor laws by failing to provide workers with an uninterrupted 30-minute meal break period or provide the proper compensation in lieu thereof.
The class action unpaid overtime lawsuit, filed in Sonoma County Superior Court, claims the defendant failed to pay the plaintiff and other workers for the time spent after shifts removing protective equipment necessary to perform their jobs. Attorneys for the plaintiffs argue that while these infractions may have a minor impact on workers on an individual basis, it represents a systemic practice of wage theft benefiting the company.
The practice of putting and and taking off protective gear before and after work shifts is known as “donning and doffing” and has become the subject of some intense legal battles in state and federal courts. While some federal Appeals Courts recognize the plaintiff’s right to be paid for this time, others have failed to do what is right and affirm a company’s requirement to pay workers for all their time spent on the job.
Plaintiff Seeks Repayment for Meal Break Periods
The second part of the plaintiff’s lawsuit alleges the defendant failed to provide workers an uninterrupted 30-minute meal break immediately following the fifth hour of work each shift. Under California law, companies must provide this time to workers for nourishment and rest or compensate the individual with an additional hour of regular pay to make up for the time.
As many as 200 other current and former workers over a four-year period could be eligible to recover back pay through the lawsuit. The claim asks for unpaid wages with interest, liquidated damages, and attorneys fees to cover the cost of litigating the suit.
Don and Doff Unpaid Overtime Lawsuits
Call (855) 754-2795 or complete the Free Unpaid Overtime Case Review form on the top right of this page if you believe that your wage rights are being violated under the FLSA. Our top-rated team of unpaid wage lawyers will evaluate your situation to determine your best course of action to help you seek justice.
Our office will also determine if it is in your best interest to file a lawsuit against your employer. Because strict time limitations apply for filing these types of claims, we advise you contact our experienced unpaid overtime wage attorneys at your earliest convenience and preserve your legal rights.