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The food processing industry serves an important role in our economy, and hourly workers in that industry deserve to be paid properly and fairly.

Companies engaged in food processing, manufacturing, and other types of production often require employees to wear protective clothing and equipment. While this is intended to improve workplace safety and ensure the quality of the goods they produce, many employers fail to compensate hourly workers for time spent putting on (“donning”) and taking off (“doffing”) necessary coveralls, ear protection, safety glasses, steel toed boots, bump caps, and other gear.

Employers and Paying Wages

Some employers try to avoid paying wages and overtime by requiring production laborers to don their clothing and equipment at the beginning of their shifts, and doff the gear after their shifts have ended. Because hourly, non-exempt employees are usually paid only after clocking in and before clocking out, time devoted to pre-shift and post-shift donning and doffing is not paid.

For food processing workers, that unpaid time can be significant. In some cases, employees have been forced to arrive early and stay later to put in their required hours; this sometimes amounts to 40 minutes or more each day that often translates into overtime for which workers are not compensated in violation of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.

If you work in the food processing industry and believe that your employer has broken the law by failing to pay you the wages and overtime you deserve, it’s time for you to speak with a lawyer. The attorneys in Sommers Schwartz’s Employment Litigation Group have represented thousands of hourly workers in individual and class action lawsuits involving donning and doffing issues and other workplace abuses.

Please contact us today to learn how we can help.

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I appreciate the team effort provided.

I would like you gentlemen to know that for those of us that have been violated and need legal assistance, we must often wait for justice in quiet desperation. As such, the words I used above “confidence and comfort” came only from you and your team.

There is no one that will harder than attorney Jason Thompson.

There is no one that will harder than attorney Jason Thompson. He and his staff will work with you to make sure they get the best settlement possible.

You did a great job.

Thank for all you did in my case, Kevin. You did a great job.

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I’m speechless! I never expected to receive the settlement that you guys worked so hard for! Thank you so much!

I wanted to thank you.

I wanted to thank you for your assistance in resolving the matter with my employer. You listened to my complaints, kept me involved, provided guidance and were diligent.

Our attorney was tough, very professional, and knew his stuff!

Our case was very difficult and challenging and therefore was very time-consuming. Each step of the way, Matt explained what was going on and what I could expect, and he always kept in contact through emails or phone calls. Matt is sincere, kind, and compassionate – he has become more than just our attorney. He is more like family!

You are outstanding!!!

I was so impressed with your knowledge of the law and the way you were able to step back and look at all the options while explaining it to me in layman terms. I would recommend you to anyone who is or has been a victim of workplace harassment, discrimination or any other employment issue.

There are no words for my gratitude.

I want to thank you again for what you have done for my family. There are no words for my gratitude. I will forever be grateful.

My matter was handled and prosecuted above my expectations.

My matter was handled and prosecuted above my expectations and resulted in a positive outcome – other attorneys I contacted weren’t even interested in representing me. I would strongly recommend Sommers Schwartz and Mr. Watkins.

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