New York, NY: An unpaid overtime, wage and hour class action lawsuit pending against Domino' Pizza on East 89th Street in Manhattan has been settled for $1.28 million. The lawsuit was brought by pizza delivery man Carlos Rodriguez Herrera and 60 co-worker.
In the lawsuit Herrera alleged he frequently worked 65 hours a week but was only paid for 45. A co-worker, Anatole Yameogo, remembers working from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. one Saturday, but his pay stub showed he worked five hours that same day. "One manager told me you will work more than 50 hours a week but we'll pay you for 40,"Mr. Yameogo said. "That helps the managers increase their bonus."
In their lawsuit, the two bicycle deliverymen alleged the Domino franchisee who employed them was in violation of minimum New York wage and overtime laws, among other things. Over the course of time, dozens of their co-workers who worked delivering pizza, joined the lawsuit.
According to the reported terms of the settlement, the awards will range from $61,300 to $400 per delivery person, depending on how long each worked for Domino' Pizza New York (DPNY), which owns four Domino' in Manhattan.
The litigation took three years, and accused DPNY of numerous wage and hour violations, including not giving a legally required lunch break, not paying for their uniforms, and paying a subminimum tip wage even when the workers did untipped work, like cleaning ovens and floors or distributing Domino' fliers.
The lawsuit alleged that instead of paying a $5.65 tip wage for delivery workers, DPNY should have paid the full state minimum wage because the company failed to keep proper records of their tipped hours and failed to properly explain tip wages.
Mr. Rodriguez, originally from Mexico, said that in 2007 he complained to his manager that he had been improperly underpaid only to be fired on the spot. He then decided to take legal action. "The boss would always tell people, 'If you don't like it here, the door is open to go elsewhere,'"he said.
Notably, Magistrate Judge James C. Francis IV of Federal District Court granted the plaintiffs' request to include the national Domino' Pizza company as a defendant, after the delivery workers asserted that it was a joint employer that knew or should have known about the franchisee' alleged wage violations.