McDonald’s Just Got Served: Class-Action Lawsuits Coming Right Up
Uh oh, McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) is going to need a Happy Meal after this one. The New York Times reported Thursday that the world’s largest fast food chain has been slapped with multiple class-action lawsuits filed by workers in California, Michigan, and New York. The employees who filed the suits charge the company and several franchise owners with illegally underpaying employees by erasing hours from their timecards, not paying overtime, and forcing them to work off the clock. The lawsuits were made public during a telephone conference that occurred at noon Thursday, and the employees’ lawyers and organizers of the union-backed movement campaigning for fast food restaurants’ increased wages were the ones responsible for the announcement of the suits.
According to the Times, in the lawsuits filed in Michigan against McDonald’s and two franchise owners, workers allege that they were instructed to come into work, but wait an hour or two without pay until a sufficient number of customers required service. They also make the argument that because McDonald’s requires employees to pay for their uniforms, their expenses result in a pay below the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.
Over on the West Coast, the Times says that workers are suing McDonald’s and franchise owners for not paying them for all hours they worked, purposefully cheating them out of overtime, erasing hours from pay records, and refusing them legally required rest breaks and meal periods. McDonald’s put out a statement on Thursday in regards to the new claims, highlighted by the Times, “McDonald’s and our independent owner-operators share a concern and commitment to the well-being and fair treatment of all people who work in McDonald’s restaurants. We are currently reviewing the allegations in the lawsuits. McDonald’s and our independent franchisees are committed to undertaking a comprehensive investigation of the allegations and will take any necessary actions as they apply to our respective organizations.”