Albertsons accused of failing to pay overtime, provide meal periods

March 24, 2016

A California pharmacist recently filed a class action lawsuit against Albertsons, accusing the grocery chain of failing to pay overtime or allowing mandated rest and meal periods for its pharmacists.

A California pharmacist recently filed a class action lawsuit against Albertsons, accusing the grocery chain of failing to pay overtime or allowing mandated rest and meal periods for its pharmacists.

Courtesy: Shutterstock/hafakotAccording to the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court Central District of California, Antonio Diaz worked for Albertsons as a pharmacist-floater from January 20, 2014 to February 28, 2014 at various locations near Bakersfield, Calif. He received training at the grocery chain’s corporate office in Fullerton, Calif.

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During that period, Diaz claims Albertsons did not pay him for overtime hours and frequently did not provide meal or rest periods. His lawsuit seeks certification as a class action and accuses Albertson of unlawful, fraudulent, and unfair business practices.

Carlos Illingworth, an Albertsons spokesperson, said the company does not comment on pending litigation. “However, we are committed to complying with all federal and state wage and hour laws,” Illingworth wrote in an email to Drug Topics.

Diaz claims he worked more than 40 hours a week but was not paid overtime wages for the additional hours. “Defendants required plaintiff Diaz to work in excess of eight hours per workday,” the lawsuit stated. “In general, plaintiff Diaz worked four days per week of a least 10 hours per day.”

Diaz’s lawsuit contends that while he was required to clock out for meal periods, he could not leave the premises and was required to do work during those periods.

 

“[Diaz’s] supervisors, employees, and customers routinely and regularly interrupted plaintiff’s meal periods 3 to 4 times per meal period with requests to perform work or respond to inquiries, which plaintiff did,” the lawsuit stated. “Defendants did not compensate plaintiff Diaz with a meal period premium for the interrupted meal periods.”

Diaz’s lawsuit also maintains that frequently he did not receive required rest periods. “When he was able to take a rest period, defendants’ supervisors, employees, and customers routinely and regularly interrupted with requests to perform work,” the lawsuit stated.

Last year, CVS agreed to pay $7.4 million to more than 1,600 California pharmacists to settle charges it forced employees to work several days in a row without paying overtime. That agreement ended three class action lawsuits that alleged CVS violated state labor laws.