In California, the workers who are often vulnerable to various forms of ill treatment at the hands of their employers are those in the food industry. Some of these workers are from other countries or are otherwise not aware of their rights as an employee when it comes to the minimum wage and hour laws. What they must understand is that their employer is required to adhere to the law. With a chain restaurant, it is becoming increasingly possible to hold the company responsible for violations just as much as the franchisee.
A recent ruling in California declared that McDonald’s will be liable for certain issues that have been alleged such as unfair working conditions and an absence of benefits. In the past, this was relegated to the responsibility of the franchise owner with the company disavowing any blame for it. The case had been filed in 2014 and said that there were more that 500 workers who did not receive the wages they were supposed to receive at five different restaurant locations owned by a single franchisee. Included in the allegations were statements that workers did not get overtime, timecards were falsely recorded, minimum wage was not followed and workers who were dismissed or quit were not paid wages they were owed.
That particular lawsuit was determined to be a federal class action case. With that, the decision was made that the company is in part responsible for these issues. This is the first opportunity that workers for the fast food giant have been able to seek compensation from the company itself and not just from the owner of the franchise. This case opens the door for other employees of McDonald’s as well as the different chains in California to consider filing a case that includes the corporation as a defendant.
An employee in any job needs to understand his or her rights to receive the minimum wage and other benefits that are mandated by law. If they do not or some other right is violated, it could be the basis for a legal filing. Speaking to a legal professional who is experienced in helping clients file a claim based on violations of wage and hour law is the first step to moving forward with a case.
Source: delish.com, “This Latest McDonald’s Lawsuit Will Seriously Benefit McDonald’s Employees In A Big Way,” Rheanna O’Neil Bellomo, July 18, 2016