The plaintiffs have been requested to hitch the Chicago grocer’s class motion lawsuit

Jewel-Osco is accused of failing to adequately compensate its employees for the titles awarded to them.

Jewel-Osco employees could join a class action lawsuit alleging the grocery chain refused to give deputy managers compensation for overtime. The original lawsuit was filed in federal court in Chicago in May, accusing Jewel-Osco, the most popular grocery chain in Chicagoland, “wrongly classified the store assistants as employees exempt from overtime pay under state and federal law” court records. This is just one of several lawsuits against retailers suggesting they are trying to cut labor costs by giving employees leadership titles without changing their job responsibilities.

Assistant Store Directors “spend most of their time doing the same tasks as non-exempt employees, including helping customers, working on the cash register, moving products, storing shelves, adjusting and resetting displays , inventory counting, shop cleaning, and otherwise available as cashiers, warehouse workers, or other hourly workers, “the suit claims, adding,” They are not in managerial roles such as hiring and firing and should be classified as hourly workers who are entitled to one and a half hours of wages if you work more than forty hours a week. “

Photo by Daria Volkova on Unsplash

Chicago-based Lisa Piazza, who has served as the deputy general manager of four different Chicago Jewel Osco stores since February 2019, originally filed the application. She claimed she worked around fifty to sixty hours a week and was not compensated for the extra hours she invested. Piazza claimed that “comparable employees with different titles” and although they are “classified as management, they still spend most of their working hours doing the same tasks as employees who are paid for overtime, such as working in the office. B. direct customer interaction, registration, inventory, shelves and displays as well as cleaning ”, so the court files.

Earlier this month, U.S. District Judge Mary Rowland denied Jewel-Osco’s motion for dismissal and instead granted conditional certification of a class action lawsuit. Piazza attorneys can now update current and former Jewel-Osco employees of the lawsuit and give them the opportunity to join. Jason Conway, a Philadelphia attorney representing the piazza, estimates that up to 500 to 600 additional employees could be affected who could be listed as plaintiffs. Eligible employees are those who served as assistant store directors from May 28, 2017 to the date of the final judgment.

The suit “may have a wider impact on Albertson’s properties,” Conway said. Jewel-Osco is owned by Albertsons, who also owns Safeway, Vons, and other large chains. He added, “Employers can exempt employees from overtime laws if they earn more than $ 35,568 and do primarily office or non-manual management work, and use discretion or independent judgment in their work. In retailing, roles such as the assistant store manager raise questions as these employees may have to take on extra work after hourly workers with overtime are sent home at the end of their shift – a burden that became even greater at the start of the pandemic than stores in particular were busy and understaffed. “

Conway’s legal practice also has cases pending against four of Kroger’s food brands in other states. “These cases rarely go to court, but rather settle after they have been granted conditional collective action certification and other plaintiffs join,” he said. Companies have generally not reclassified the disputed positions, which sometimes leads to further lawsuits later. “

Piazza’s suit lists itself as a defendant in Jewel Food Stores, New Albertsons and American Drug Stores, both of which are wholly owned by Albertsons.

Swell:

When do employees earn overtime? Hundreds of Jewel-Osco employees can join a lawsuit following a decision

Richter Approves OT Wage Class Action Lawsuit for Jewel-Osco Assistant Store Manager

Jewel-Osco has been sued for failure to pay overtime to assistant store directors

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