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March 30, 2017

UFW Ordered to Pay $1.2M in Wage & Hour Case

The United Farm Workers of America (UFW) has been ordered to pay $1.2 million in unpaid overtime and other penalties in a class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of current and former employees.

On Monday, Monterey County Superior Court Judge Thomas Wills ruled in favor of about 160 UFW employees, finding that their employer failed to pay overtime and meal periods.

The lawsuit was filed in 2014 by former UFW organizer Francisco Cerritos. The plaintiffs are represented by Michael Masuda, Ana Toledo and Lindsey Berg-James with the Salinas-based law firm of Noland, Hamerly, Etienne & Hoss.

Mr. Cerritos was awarded $50,995 in overtime wages and $14,269.32 in premium wages for meal period violations. $119,600 was awarded to class members for violations under Labor Code Section 226 for the UFW’s failure to include the pay period dates on wage statements. Nearly $1 million was awarded in Private Attorneys General Act of 2014 (“PAGA”) penalties. In addition, the UFW will have to pay a substantial, yet to be determined, amount to cover Noland, Hamerly’s attorneys’ fees. 

The UFW said it will appeal the judgment.

For more information, contact Jason Resnick at (949) 885-2253.