Wage & Hour Issues

On September 9, 2011, federal judge Paul Crotty issued a decision in Torres v. Gristede’s Operating Corp., a class action asserting the non-payment of wages and overtime, finding that Gristede’s owner John Catsimatidis is an “employer” within the meaning of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and the New York Labor Law, and hence is jointly…

Read More Court: Gristede’s Owner John Catsimatidis is an “Employer” For Purposes of the FLSA and New York Labor Law

On August 23, 2011, plaintiff Westley Artope sued ex-model Paige Bluhdorn (and Paul Bluhdorn), alleging that after he rejected Paige’s sexual advances,  he was subjected to a hostile work environment and ultimately fired.  He also alleged federal and state wage/hour violations.  His federal court complaint:

Read More Dog trainer sues ex-model for sex-based discrimination and wage/hour violations

An Appellate Division, First Dept. panel recently upheld the trial court’s dismissal of plaintiff’s claims alleging violations of Labor Law §§ 191 and 193.  The offer letter that granted plaintiff an entitlement to be paid commissions also provided that the commission rates were those “reasonably expected to be paid” and “may be modified at any time”…

Read More Commission Reduction Permissible Where Expressly Authorized by Agreement

In Mullins et al. v. City of New York, 09-3435 (August 5, 2011), the Second Circuit held that the plaintiffs’ (4000+ NYPD sergeants) “primary duty” was not “management”, and thus they did not qualify for the “executive” exemption from the FLSA’s overtime pay requirements.  See 29 U.S.C. 207(a)(1) (overtime requirement); 29 U.S.C. 213(a)(1) (executive exemption). The court’s decision centered…

Read More Second Circuit: NYPD sergeants are entitled to overtime under the FLSA

In Winans v. Starbucks, 796 F. Supp. 2d 515 (SDNY July 11, 2011), the Southern District of New York dismissed a complaint alleging that Starbucks improperly retained gratuities that plaintiffs were entitled to receive. Plaintiffs, several Starbucks “assistant store managers”, sued their employer for violating New York Labor Law 196-d.  The Court ruled in Starbucks’…

Read More Court Holds That Starbucks Complied With Tip-Sharing Statute

A New York law, known as the “Wage Theft Prevention Act” (and codified at Section 195 of the New York Labor Law) (“WTPA”), recently went into effect.    The WTPA, among other things, strengthens the Labor Law’s anti-retaliation provision, specifies additional notice requirements, and significantly increases penalties for noncompliance (by, for example, increasing liquidated damages from…

Read More NY Enacts Employee-Friendly “Wage Theft Prevention Act”

In Kasten v. Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp., 131 S.Ct. 1325 (2011), the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Fair Labor Standards Act’s (FLSA) anti-retaliation provision does not require the submission of a written complaint. That provision, codified at 29 U.S.C. 215(a)(3), makes it unlawful to, inter alia, “discharge or in any other manner discriminate against any employee…

Read More FLSA Anti-Retaliation Provision Covers Oral, as Well as Written, Complaints