AKRON, Ohio — A pair of former baseball players from the independent Frontier League have filed an unfair wage lawsuit, alleging their pay was below minimum wage and their rights were violated under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
The federal lawsuit — filed in Akron, Ohio — claims the semi-pro league takes advantage of players by not paying them overtime or minimum wage as compensation for all the time they put in.
During the five-month season, rookie players can expect to be paid only $650 per month while playing six games per week.
The plaintiffs in the unpaid wage lawsuit allege they routinely worked over eight hours per day and spend hours riding on team buses between games.
Because the wages are so low, the plaintiffs were forced to seek additional employment during the offseason while still maintaining their physical conditioning, the lawsuit alleges.
One of the attorneys in this case was a minor league pitcher for the San Francisco Giants farm system and personally attested to his struggles while playing ball.
Class Action Status Sought in Semi-pro Baseball League Lawsuit
Attorneys for the two plaintiffs seek class action status for the suit, meaning hundreds or even thousands of additional plaintiffs with claims against the league could be part of this particular suit. In addition to back pay and compensatory damages, the plaintiffs also seek a federal order to comply with the FLSA.
The suit against the Frontier League and some of its member teams is only the latest legal action taken against a minor league or semi-pro baseball team. According to the Wall Street Journal, a class of up to 10,000 plaintiffs filed suit in 2014 against MLB for its role in allowing the alleged practice of underpaying minor league players.
Both suits will have an uphill battle against the defendants. While the FLSA sets clear standards for minimum wage and overtime payments, there also exist several exemptions for when employers do not have to pay certain employees these wages. However, the exemptions are narrowly defined and employees are often misclassified by their employers in an attempt to skirt overtime payments.
Unpaid Wage Lawsuits
Call (855) 754-2795 or complete the Free Unpaid Overtime Case Review form on the top right of this page if you feel that you and and other employees 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.