According to Law360.com (subscription required), TD Bank NA faces a class action lawsuit filed by a teller services manager, alleging wage and hour violations under New Jersey law and the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The suit is part of a growing trend of other banks facing similar litigation.
Under the FLSA, nonexempt employees are eligible for overtime compensation when they work in excess of 40 hours each week, whereas exempt employees cannot earn overtime compensation, no matter the number of hours worked, based on the assumption that their job responsibilities require a “meaningful degree of independent discretion and judgment.”
The teller services manager in the TD Bank class action asserts that his position is nonexempt because it does not require any degree of independent discretion or judgment, nor does it grant authority to set wages, determine branch hours, or hire, fire, or promote employees. He also claims the bank failed to record overtime, despite knowing employees often worked more than 40 hours each week.
The lawsuit piggybacks on an August 2014 class action settlement, for which TD Bank NA agreed to pay $9.9 million to approximately 2,600 assistant store managers who alleged similar wage and hour violations.
In October 2014, JPMorgan Chase Bank NA settled with a group of California bank tellers who alleged similar FLSA violations, agreeing to pay them $12 million. Pending final approval is another case against the from May 2015, which a New York federal judge allowed to merge with the California case.
Merrill Lynch & Co. and Bank of America Inc. also face such FLSA lawsuits in New York and California, with workers claiming they were improperly classified as exempt employees as a means to short-change them of pay and benefits.
All nonexempt employees are due proper wages according to the Fair Labor Standard Act and applicable state laws, despite employers’ efforts to mislabel their positions. The attorneys in Sommers Schwartz’s Employment Litigation Group have extensive experience representing plaintiffs in FLSA lawsuits, and are available to answer any questions you have regarding your employment rights – contact us today.