updated 09:39 pm EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
Retail employees complain of violations of break and meal times, final paychecks
While Apple wrestles with a lawsuit alleging an improper "gentleman's agreement" that prevented it and other tech firms from "poaching" their most valuable employees, the company has now been named in another legal action that concerns itself with labor violations for its retail and corporate operations workers. The new lawsuit, granted class certification on Monday, charges Apple with mismanaging and providing inadequate breaks and meal times, as well as being slow on issuing final paychecks.
The original suit stems from 2011 and was originally filed by four employees who accused the company of violating those areas of California's labor laws. By being granted class status now, the number of plaintiffs is reported to have jumped to over 20,000, according to attorney Tyler Belong.
A statement from Belong that summarizes the case, as reported by AppleInsider, says that "the Plaintiffs sought to represent themselves and all other similarly-situated Apple employees in California who were not provided timely meal breaks, timely rest breaks, and timely final paychecks according to California's Labor Code and Wage Orders."
"Just yesterday, after years of litigation, against Apple's opposition, and after voluminous briefing and lengthy oral argument, the California Superior Court granted Plaintiffs' motion and certified the case as a class action, appointing Plaintiffs and Plaintiffs' counsel (Hogue & Belong) as the class representatives and class counsel on behalf of approximately 20,000 Apple employees," Belong continued. "In other words, as of yesterday's ruling, Apple now faces claims of meal period, rest period and final pay violations affecting approximately 20,000 current and former Apple employees."
Despite the long process leading to the granting of class-action status, the class is still in the process of deciding on an exact remedial monetary amount it seeks to collect for damages. Counsels says it is asking for "damages and restitution of all monies due to plaintiffs from unlawful business practices as pursuant to ten California Labor Code sections." Apple has not yet issued a statement on the case.