EMPLOYMENT LITIGATION

CASE: PETCO ANIMAL SUPPLIES STORES, INC.

Issues: Minimum wages; Illegal Deductions; Wage Payment Provisions; and Record-Keeping Provisions

Summary:

A lawsuit was filed on December 18, 2014 against Petco Animal Supplies Stores, Inc.("Petco"), who own and/or operate a privately held nationwide pet supply and pet services store with over 1,300 locations in the United States, Mexico, and Puerto Rico. The lawsuit alleges that Petco has failed to pay proper minimum wages to, and has taken unlawful deductions from, pet stylists, groomers, and bathers in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA") and the wage and hour and/or labor laws of New York, California, Connecticut, and New Jersey. Affected employees include any pet stylist, groomer, and bather who have worked at any Petco location within the last six years.

Plaintiffs allege that Petco required them to purchase their own pet grooming equipment, such as nail clippers, blades, brushes, scissors, and shedding tools. They claim that these grooming tools costs as much as $2,000, and that they were required to re-purchase them every four to six weeks. Plaintiffs further allege that on weeks in which they were required to purchase such equipment, their wages fell below the applicable minimum wage rate. Plaintiffs were paid piece-rate wages based on a percentage of the fee Petco charged for every dog they groomed. Consequently, Plaintiffs allege that they were not compensated for additional work done outside of these services. This includes time spent cleaning and maintaining the pet salon.

Plaintiffs alleged that they received unlawful deductions from their wages in accordance with Petco's compensation policy. Plaintiffs allege that all coupons or promotions provided by Petco would result in a deduction from their wages, since they were paid based on a percentage of dogs groomed. Plaintiffs also allege that any customer complaints would cause Petco to waive their grooming fees, and accordingly, result in a total loss of compensation for the Plaintiff. Where applicable, Plaintiffs allege that Petco failed to provide complete wage statements which specified the number of piece-rate units earned and all applicable hourly rates, and failed to pay all wages due immediately upon discharge and within the time required by the law. Similarly, where applicable, Plaintiffs allege that Petco failed to provide Plaintiffs with a 30 minute break every 5 hours, or failed to compensate them when they were not provided with such a break.

This lawsuit seeks to recover the difference between the Plaintiff classes' wages and the full minimum wage and reimbursement of all unlawful deductions made from their pay. Also, where applicable, this lawsuit seeks statutory damages for failing to provide accurate wage statements.

Anyone who has worked as a pet stylist, groomer, or bather and was paid piece-rate wages within the past six years may have a wage claim. Please contact the employment lawyers at Fitapelli & Schaffer, LLP, (212) 300-0375, to schedule a free consultation so that we can discuss your rights under the FLSA and NYLL.

Contact Fitapelli & Schaffer, LLP.

Current and former pet stylists, groomers, and bathers of Petco should contact Fitapelli & Schaffer, (212) 300-0375 to see if you are eligible to join the case. You can also view the complaint here.

RECORD SETTING AWARDS AND SETTLEMENTS

FOR OUR CLIENTS


$19,100,000

$19.1 Million for Tipped Restaurant Workers. (pending court approval)

Workers such as servers, bussers, runners bartenders, barbacks and other tipped workers at a large national casual dining chain alleged they were owed wages. Their claims included but were not limited to: unpaid overtime, spread-of hours, misappropriated tips, uniform-related expenses and unlawful deductions.

$15,900,000

$15.9 Million for Personal Bankers.

The firm was able to recover overtime compensation for personal bankers and others similarly situated at a national bank that operates hundreds of branches throughout the United States. Employees in affected positions claimed they were required to work more than 40 hours a week in order to meet sales quotas but were not compensated overtime for their pay.

$14,500,000

$14.5 Million for Spam Text Victims

Fitapelli & Schaffer was able to recover damages for recipients of unwanted promotional text messages from a popular young adult clothing retailer. The clothing company allegedly violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act by sending text messages to recipients’ cellular phones without their prior express written consent.

$7,000,000

$7.0 Million for Bank Loan Officers

The firm was able to recover overtime compensation for loan officers at a national bank that operates more than hundreds of branches nationwide. Employees in affected positions claimed they were required to work more than 40 hours a week in order to meet sales goals but were not compensated overtime for their pay.

$5,900,000

$5.9 Million for Commissioned Car Salesmen.

One of the largest auto dealerships in the NYC Metropolitan Area agreed to pay owed wages to its car salesmen. The company was accused of failing to pay salesmen the proper minimum wage, overtime pay, commissions, and made unlawful deductions from their earned wages in violation of federal labor laws.

$4,300,000

$4.3 Million for Personal Bankers

Even though personal bankers at this nationwide bank were classified as exempt from receiving overtime pay, the company routinely required them to work in excess of 40 hours per week. There are federal laws that help protect workers from misclassification and in this situation; Fitapelli & Schaffer was able to recover unpaid overtime for personal bankers throughout the United States.

$4,300,000

$4.3 Million for Entertainers at Gentleman’s Clubs

F&S represented entertainers at a popular gentleman’s club in New York City that claimed the club failed to pay them the proper wages. The entertainers were able to recover owed wages that included unpaid minimum wages, overtime pay, spread-of-hours pay, unlawfully retained tips, unlawful deductions, and uniform-related expenses.

$3,600,000

$3.6 Million for Tipped Employees at Upscale Restaurant

Tipped workers alleged that a Mexican Michelin rated restaurant with 17 locations denied them overtime pay, minimum wages, and call-in pay. Our firm was able to recover wages for these tipped employees that included servers, bussers, bartenders, food runners and barbacks.

$3,400,000

$3.4 Million for Assistant Managers at Bank

Fitapelli & Schaffer successfully recovered unpaid overtime for assistant managers on a salary at a bank with locations nationwide. The salaried workers argued that they were wrongfully classified as exempt from receiving overtime when working over 40 hours per week.

$3,000,000

$3.0 Million for Bank Loan Officers

The fast food chain allegedly misclassified its assistant managers as salaried workers and considered them exempt from receiving overtime pay when working over 40 hours per week. Fitapelli & Schaffer was able to recover overtime compensation for all of the popular fast food chains’ assistant managers nationwide, with the exception of California.

$2,836,000

$2.9 Million for Tipped Restaurant Employees.

Fitapelli & Schaffer was able to recover unpaid minimum wages, overtime, spread-of hours, and unlawful deductions for tipped restaurant workers at a popular dining chain. Affected workers included servers, bussers, runners bartenders, barbacks and other tipped workers.

$2,250,000

$2.25 Million for Tipped Workers at Chain Sports Bar

proper minimum wage and overtime. Fitapelli & Schaffer helped the workers recover owed wages to the following positions: servers, bussers, bartenders, and other tipped workers under federal and state labor laws.

$2,000,000

$2.0 Million for Bank Loan Officers

Fitapelli & Schaffer was able to successfully recover unpaid overtime for loan officers at a nationwide bank that operates over one thousand locations across the United States. Loan officers for the company alleged that even though they were hourly employees and consistently worked over 40 hours per week they were working off the clock and not getting overtime pay.

$1,950,000

$1.95 Million for Health Care Workers

A New York based health insurance provider allegedly had its health care workers working over 40 hours per week but required they submit weekly timesheets that only showed they worked 37.5 hours. Fitapelli & Schaffer was able to successfully recover compensation for unpaid wages, overtime and spread of hours pay.

CONTACT

FITAPELLI & SCHAFFER LLP


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