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Welder Overtime Lawsuit Filed Against Rumpke Waste for Unpaid Meal Breaks

By Coffman Legal, LLC | Posted on Dec 30 2020

Coffman Legal’s Ohio FLSA Overtime Attorneys filed a Collective and Class Action Lawsuit against Rumpke Transportation Company, LLC (d/b/a Rumpke Waste Collection & Disposal Systems) for failing to compensate its hourly welders for interrupted meal breaks.

On October 8, 2020, the law firm of Coffman Legal, LLC filed a Collective and Class Action Complaint against Defendant Rumpke Transportation Company, LLC (“Rumpke”) on behalf of hourly welders for the alleged failure of Rumpke to compensate its employees for overtime wages earned for all overtime work performed in violation of the Fair Labor Standard Act (“FLSA”).

Rumpke is one of the largest waste and recycling companies in the United States and provides residential and commercial trash and recycling services to its customers in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, and West Virginia.

The Complaint alleges that Rumpke has a companywide policy of requiring a meal break deduction to be taken from its hourly welders’ daily hours worked even though welders were unable to take uninterrupted meal breaks (welders either missed their meal breaks or they were otherwise cut short by performing job duties). These employees allege that even when they did not clock out for meal breaks, Rumpke carried out its companywide policy and/or practice by directing its managers to manually deduct 30 minutes from welders’ daily hours worked; again, this deduction was allegedly made regardless of whether the welders actually took full meal breaks.

The FLSA requires an employer to pay employees for their work. Further, if an employer requires its employees to take an unpaid meal break, then it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the employee is completely relieved from their job duties so they can solely eat a meal.

The Complaint alleges these hourly welders did not receive a bona fide meal break because they were not completely relieved from their job duties.

This lawsuit provides an example of how an employer can underpay its employees in violation of the FLSA by not fully paying them all overtime wages earned for all overtime work that they perform. This unpaid time often results in unpaid overtime which adds up over the course of an employee’s employment.  The FLSA sets forth the minimum compensation employees must be paid, and non-exempt hourly employees are entitled to receive full and proper compensation under the FLSA, including overtime.

The lawsuit seeks unpaid overtime wages since October 8, 2017, liquidated damages in an amount equal to the unpaid overtime, attorney’s fees, and costs, among other things.

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Western Division (Cincinnati) and is titled Gambrell v. Rumpke Transportation Company, LLC, Case No. 1:20-cv-801.

Additional information about the collective and class action against Rumpke may be found by contacting our office by calling 614-949-1181 or emailing mcoffman@mcoffmanlegal.com. If you have any questions about whether you are being properly paid all overtime wages earned for all of the compensable hours you work (including overtime), then contact our office today to speak with our Overtime Attorneys regarding any wage and hour issues.

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