California airline employees who weren't paid overtime after trading shifts with other workers.
What's Going On?
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org have reason to believe some airlines aren't paying overtime when their employees pick up extra work through shift trades.
How a Class Action Lawsuit Can Help
If filed and successful, class action lawsuits could help employees get back the money they should have received for their overtime hours.
Can I Get in Trouble?
Federal law prohibits employers from retaliating against workers who exercise their legal rights.
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org have launched an investigation into whether airlines are paying their employees properly when they trade shifts with other workers.
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org have launched an investigation into whether airlines are paying their employees properly when they trade shifts with other workers. It is suspected that some airlines are cheating their workers out of overtime wages when they pick up extra shifts, claiming the employees are arranging this time themselves – and therefore aren’t owed overtime pay.
Specifically, we are looking to hear from California employees currently or formerly employed as:
Certified station trainers
Internal evaluation auditors
Customer service agents
What Does California Law Say About Trading Shifts?
California law has a provision that applies specifically to airline employees who change their schedules at their own request. The law says that, in some circumstances, these employees are not entitled to receive overtime wages. This includes when an employee “requests a change in days off” or “trades days off with another employee.”
So, What Does This All Mean for Me?
Basically, the airlines are claiming that the law should be translated to mean that employees are never owed overtime when they request additional hours not required by the employer – whether that be from swapping shifts or picking up extra hours through a shift trade.
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org believe, however, that the law applies only in instances in which employees swap shifts (e.g. Joe swaps his 12-hour Tuesday shift for Mary’s 12-hour Thursday shift) and not when they trade shifts and therefore increase their total weekly hours worked.
The attorneys also have reason to believe some airline workers in California are working through their breaks without getting paid, aren’t being paid in accordance with state minimum wage laws, and are working off the clock (including pre- and post-shift work) without pay.
Should a class action lawsuit be filed and become successful, airline workers may be able to collect several years of unpaid overtime.