Costco- the largest wholesale club operator in the US, is facing a $50 million class action lawsuit in California, where it has some 100 stores.
The plaintiffs in the suit claim that Costco denies its California employees compensation and overtime benefits due to them under state law. The heart of the scheme involves locking hourly employees inside each warehouse every night for approximately 15 minutes after they have finished work and are off the clock. During this period, the stores' managers perform closing activities, such as removing jewellery from display cases and emptying cash registers.
The suit was filed by Mary Pytelewski, a full-time clerk who's worked nearly a decade in Costco's warehouse in San Marcos, CA, on behalf of herself and all other similarly situated Costco employees.
The Complaint asserts that the class includes several hundred or more Costco employees, geographically dispersed throughout California, all of whom work or have worked overtime on a daily and weekly basis without the compensation due to them. Costco's employment practices are described as violating the California Labor Code, the California Industrial Welfare Commission Occupational Wage Order, and the Unfair Competition Law, Business and Professions Code.