According to Court records the class maintained they were improperly classified as exempt from overtime, when in fact they were properly due overtime for work performed above 8 hours in any given day, and 40 hours in any given week. According to the terms of the settlement the class of 158 workers will each receive $442 per week of work. Additionally, five class representatives will receive an additional $5,000 with $15,000 going to the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency. A sum of $9,000 will go to the claims administrator, according to Court documents.
The unpaid overtime lawsuit was settled relatively quickly, unlike a related lawsuit from which Campos v. Ecolab stemmed. Ross v. Ecolab was settled for $35 million in March of last year, but took seven years of litigation to reach that point. In comparison, Campos v. Ecolab was filed in August of 2016 and went into mediation after three months. The final approval of the proposed $5.95 settlement came within a year of the filing.
Ross v. Ecolab made similar allegations of misclassification under California overtime law. To wit, workers hired to service dishwashers, together with employees undertaking promotion and marketing tasks for Ecolab’s cleaning products, claimed they were incorrectly classified as exempt from overtime pay in violation of overtime pay laws.
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As for the Campos plaintiffs, Judge Hamilton characterized the end result in the unpaid overtime lawsuit as “a very good result for the class,” considering the presence of arbitration agreements that forbid class action lawsuits.
The case is Juan Campos v. Ecolab Inc., Case No. 4:16-cv-04829, in the US District Court for the Northern District of California.