These days, it is virtually impossible to turn on the television, open social media or even take public transportation without hearing about Donald Trump and his bid for the GOP presidential nomination. Regardless of your feelings about him as a candidate, he is clearly an excellent marketer and seems thrilled every time he is mentioned in the press – even if it is for a story depicting him in a negative light.
A recent article from the International Business Times reports Trump has been sued by hundreds of his own employers for alleged violations of the local and national labor laws. The article suggests that the may be somewhat different from his “tough but fair” reputation on The Apprentice, where he was known for his catch phrase, “You’re fired.”
The various lawsuits that have been filed by hundreds of Trump’s employees levy a variety of allegations, including union intimidation, knowingly hiring undocumented workers, and a variety of wage and discrimination claims.
As our Los Angeles wage and hour claims lawyers are familiar, many companies will try to misclassify employees to avoid paying overtime and benefits. If an employee is classified as an independent contractor or a seasonal worker, they may not be entitled to overtime. This is legal if the status is factually correct, but if you are an hourly worker and your employer is trying to avoid paying you overtime or holiday pay, you should contact an experienced employment attorney as soon as possible to see if you have a valid claim against your employer.
In one of these lawsuits, 300 employees from a Trump owned Los Angeles area golf club filed a lawsuit for age discrimination and unpaid wages. That case has settled for just under $500,000. However, it should be noted that in a typical settlement agreement, which was likely the case here, no party is required to admit to any liability in connection with the matter. This is why one of the major parties will enter into a private settlement agreement in addition to keeping litigation expenses down.
In that case, the named plaintiff in the class action matter said she was frequently denied meal breaks and then fired. After being terminated, she said the company refused to pay out her vacation days that she had earned prior to her termination. Employees are generally required to either be allowed to take the days off prior to leaving the job, or in the event of a sudden departure, to be paid out the value of those days in his or her final paycheck from the company.
To make matters worse, she said her schedule was changed, so she would never be on the clock when Donald Trump himself was scheduled to be on the property. The reason she alleged this was that Trump preferred to see younger women working at his clubs. If true, this would be age discrimination at the very least and possibly other types of discrimination recognized under the laws of the state of California.
Contact the employment attorneys at Nassiri Law Group, practicing in Orange County, Riverside and Los Angeles. Call 949.375.4734.
Hundreds Of Donald Trump’s Employees Have Sued For Alleged Labor Infractions, March 14, 2016, International Business Times
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California Considering New Regulations to Prevent Workplace Violence Among Healthcare Workers, Jan. 11, 2016, Orange County Gender Bias Lawyer Blog