September 22, 2021 – Settlement Given Final Approval
United States District Judge Robert E. Wier has given final approval to a $1,000,000 settlement between the parties involved in the lawsuit detailed on this page, formally ending the litigation.
According to a September 14 order, delivery drivers covered by the settlement will each receive a cut of roughly $535,000 while about $25,000 will be split among roughly 12 claimants who worked only as dispatchers. The amount paid to each driver will be based on the number of miles they drove during the period covered by the lawsuit, the order states.
Judge Wier wrote that based on the claims that had already been submitted, the average settlement award amounts to more than $4,600, with the highest payout exceeding $31,000.
In light of the settlement’s approval, the lawsuit has been dismissed with prejudice, though the court retains jurisdiction only for the purpose of enforcing the terms of the deal.
Omnicare, Inc. – along with subsidiaries Home Care Pharmacy, LLC; D&R Pharmaceutical Services, LLC; and Three Folks Apothecary, LLC – is facing a proposed class and collective action alleging labor law violations. The defendants supposedly operate a pharmaceutical delivery business executed by their delivery drivers, who, according to the complaint, are misclassified as independent contractors. The plaintiff says he worked for the defendants as a delivery driver and was paid a flat fee based on the routes he was assigned that, when divided into an hourly rate, fell below the minimum wage. He further claims he and other drivers were not reimbursed for the costs of operating their own vehicles – such as gasoline, maintenance, insurance, and depreciation – and were denied time-and-a-half premium wages for the hours they worked above 40 each week.
On top of that, the suit argues, the defendants deducted fees from workers’ wages for payroll processing and data transfer and failed to reimburse them for expenses incurred “solely for Defendants’ benefit,” such as uniforms and employment screening fees.
The case claims the plaintiff and others should have been classified as employees rather than independent contractors and afforded the wage protections set forth by the Fair Labor Standards Act. The suit says their employer-employee relationship is evidenced by the significant degree of control the defendants maintained over employees’ work, noting that Omnicare determined their routes; the policies and procedures they were to follow; pricing; schedules; and uniforms.