Dollar Tree, the company known for producing inexpensive goods in a variety of categories, recently requested approval for a significant settlement to bring an end to a lawsuit brought against it by employees. The plaintiffs in the suit, Snipes vs. Dollar Tree, have requested approval for a $2.5 million settlement that would bring an end to litigation. In the case, the plaintiffs alleged that Dollar Tree had committed wage violations. Some of the violations included not allowing employees to take proper rest breaks, allowing them to recharge and continue their shifts. The plaintiffs included anyone who worked at a distribution center as part of the Dollar Tree corporation between April of 2011 and the end of 2019.
The plaintiff who brought the suit against Dollar Tree is named Terry Snipes. He filed suit against the large corporation in April of 2015. The suit and class membership have been made more complicated by the employee arbitration program that has been set up by Dollar Tree.
The lead plaintiff decided to exit this program before he brought a lawsuit against the company. Back in May, a United States District Judge was asked by Dollar Tree to force the arbitration members that were signed by around 1,600 employees following the October 6, 2014 cutoff.
The judge agreed and forced the claims to head into arbitration if they signed arbitration pacts following the October cutoff; however, these employees are still allowed to have access to the settlement agreement.
In the original suit, the plaintiffs alleged that these accusations are a violation of California state law. The workers stated that the company did not give them appropriate breaks and maintained poor practices with regards to their timekeeping. The settlement amount is a big victory for the workers. The workers state that the settlement represents an outstanding result, given the relative strengths and weaknesses of the case. The settlement includes $125,000 towards claims under the California Private Attorneys General Act, more than $90,000 going towards the Labor and Workforce Development Agency, and $750,000 in fees for the legal team. The 2,400 members of the class action settlement will each get around $625 each. This is a major victory for workers in the state of California.