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Aldi, AI California Overtime Rate and Break Penalties California Class Action

Aldi Food Market

It’s an old story: companies not paying employees proper overtime. But there are many different ways to do that. In this case, the complaint alleges (among other labor law violations) that Aldi, Inc and AI California, LLC did not take incentive pay into consideration when determining the overtime rate.

A class and a subclass have been proposed for this action.

  • The California Class for this action is all individuals who are or were employed by Aldi, Inc. or AI California, Inc. as non-exempt employees at any time between July 10, 2015 and a date to be determined by the court.
  • There is also a California Labor Subclass which is non-exempt employees who worked for the two companies at any time between July 10, 2016 and a date to be determined by the court.

Plaintiff Jennifer Lacey-Salas worked for Aldi and/or AI California jointly. She was a non-exempt employee and was therefore entitled to overtime pay and meal and rest breaks when appropriate.

She also received extra pay under a non-discretionary incentive program that gave workers additional pay if they met certain targets. 

Non-exempt employees are entitled to overtime if they work more than eight hours in a day or forty hours in a week. This is calculated at a rate of one-and-a-half times their normal rate of pay, and that normal rate is supposed to include things like incentive pay. The complaint alleges that the companies did not include Lacey-Salas’s incentive pay when figuring her overtime rate. 

Also, at times Lacey-Salas was not able to take proper rest breaks or be fully relieved of her duties during a meal break. On occasion, she was also not able to take a second meal break. For missed meal and rest breaks, employees are supposed to be compensated with extra pay, but the complaint alleges that this pay was also not properly calculated. 

Because of these miscalculations, the complaint says that Lacey-Salas was not provided with accurate, itemized wage statements showing the correct rates for things like overtime and break penalties.

In addition, she was required to use her own cell phone in carrying out her duties, but she was not reimbursed for the expenses she incurred in doing this.

The complaint alleges that these things are violations of the California Labor Code and Industrial Wage Commission (IWC) Wage Orders. These violations in turn lead to the complaints claim of unfair competition under the California Business & Professions Code. 

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