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Carwash owner ordered to pay employees $2.4M in back wages

On Behalf of | Aug 9, 2019 | Employment Law |

Every employee working in California must be paid the wages that they have rightfully earned. As reported by Professional Carwashing & Detailing, a court-ordered an employer in Culver City to pay workers $2.4 million in back wages and penalties in the largest wage-theft case involving a carwash. At Brock & Gonzales, we understand that all employees have basic rights to receive their full wages in exchange for their time and labor. When an employer fails to comply with the law, a civil action may be required to get paid and prevent further exploitation.

Employees working at Playa Vista Car Wash not only had their timecards falsified, but were also allegedly paid less than the minimum wage and denied overtime. The general manager purportedly required employees to check into an alley located near the carwash one-half hour before the business opened each morning. If workers were sent home, they would not be paid for the time they were required to wait in the alley for the manager to decide whether they would work that day.

The court found the carwash company and its owners liable not only for wage theft, but for docking $19,000 from the employees’ paychecks for using towels. Employers are generally required to supply their employees with all the tools required to carry out the functions of their job. The jury awarded $1.8 million to the carwash employees for back wages and $516,000 in additional penalties for their employer’s violation of state labor laws.

California law specifies that employees who are paid hourly must be paid wages for their time spent working at least twice a month. Our page on wage and hour violations provides more information on your rights to receive your pay from an employer.