class action filed against Alabama company for FLSA overtime violations

Posted: March 27, 2009 Author: Kurt Niland Consumer Fraud

A filed by employees against Buffalo Rock Co. of Birmingham, has been certified as a lawsuit, according to a report in the Birmingham . Workers filed the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for Birmingham in 2007, alleging the company’s failure to compensate some of its sales and delivery employees for overtime work.

Rock is one of the country’s largest privately owned Pepsi-Cola bottlers with 14 distribution centers in Alabama, , and . Its distribution area covers a population of 6.5 million.

Employees represented by the suit contend that Buffalo Rock violated the Fair Labor Standards Act when it failed to pay them and others in the company for work performed over the regular 40 hour work week.

“Buffalo Rock knowingly, intentionally and willfully violated the Fair Labor Standards Act by failing to pay plaintiffs and all similarly situated employees the overtime compensation to which defendant Buffalo Rock knew they were entitled,” the lawsuit says.

Buffalo Rock maintains that the ’s overtime clause doesn’t apply to the overtime hours clocked by the workers represented by the lawsuit.

Provisions for are a common basis for many citing FLSA violations. FLSA regulations exempt certain workers, such as executive, administrative, professional and outside sales employees, from overtime. However, according to the Department of Labor, “employees generally must meet certain tests regarding their job duties and be paid on a salary basis at not less than $455 per week.” Misclassification of employees, unclear employment agreements, or simple misunderstanding of the law are common violations of FLSA provisions.

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