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Sushi Samba Workers Reach $2.4M Employment Class Action Settlement

This is a settlement for the Employment lawsuit.

Santa Clara, CA: A preliminary $2.4 million settlement has been reached in an unpaid wage and overtime class action lawsuit pending against Sushi Samba restaurants. The lawsuit was brought by workers in who claim the restaurant chain failed to pay them minimum wage, tips and overtime in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act and New York Labor Law.

Specifically, the plaintiffs allege that Sushi Samba did not pay workers for all hours worked, did not pay overtime when the workers labored for more than 40 hours in a week and took money from a tip pool to give to sushi chefs who allegedly did not interact with customers. The plaintiffs, which include servers, bussers, runners, bartenders and hosts, assert that the tips were improperly garnished at six locations in New York City, Florida, Chicago and Las Vegas.

According to the proposed terms of the tentative settlement the named plaintiffs would receive $50,000 in service payments with the remaining funds divided between the putative class members on a prorated, weighed basis, with New York workers getting the largest share and Nevada workers getting the smallest. Lawyers fees would also be taken from the settlement sum.

The class period would begin in May 2009 for New York workers and in May 2012 for the other workers, with the period ending when the settlement receives final approval, documents state.

Additionally, the complaint filed on October 21, only included claims for New York state labor law violations. Therefore, putative class members who worked in Florida, Illinois or Nevada locations who opt in to the settlement would agree to not file similar labor law violation claims in those states, according to the memorandum.

The case is Hadel et al. v. Gaucho LLC et al., case number 1:15-cv-03706, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

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Published on Dec-3-15


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