Taco Bell Lawsuit: Californian Food Chain to Pay Workers $500,000 for Unpaid Lunch Breaks

Mar 17, 2016 01:38 PM EDT | By Shilpa Chakravorty


A lawsuit filed against Taco Bell in 2007 has finally over, and Taco Bell's employees can rejoice after the verdict.

California jury has determined that Taco Bell workers in California are owed nearly $500,000 after finding the chain had underpaid the employees for their meal breaks, reports Nation's Restaurant News.

The class action lawsuit, which began way back in 2007 and was led by employees Lisa Hardiman and Sandrika Medlock, was consolidated with other similar cases in 2009, according to Eater.

The February 22 decision handed down by a U.S. district court in Eastern California determined Taco Bell had not followed California law dictating the terms of payment for meal breaks and 10-minute breaks.

Additionally, according to the report, employees were only paid for 30 minutes instead of the requisite one hour pay if they skipped their meal time during 2003 and 2007.

Moreover, Taco Bell did not provide meal breaks to employees at the fifth hour of working six hour or longer shifts and gave employees only a 10 - minute break instead of two, which is required by the law.

Other issues the suit brought up included "unpaid overtime, unpaid minimum wages, unreimbursed business expenses, vested accrued vacation wages and other claims," however, due to insufficient evidence, Taco Bell was not fined any extra amount.

Although half a million dollars is not something which can be too costly to the California based fast food giant, yet they should have been more careful about worker payments and employee benefits for the minimum wage earners.

Notably, the lawsuit against Taco Bell is just the latest in a series of lawsuit against various restaurants and food chains, which has caused them to pay good amounts for labor violations and similar instances.

Taco Bell spokesperson was found unavailable for comment after the decision.

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