Nearly a dozen LaRosa locations recently agreed to settle a pay dispute with current and former delivery drivers for $ 900,000.
Nearly twelve LaRosa’a franchises recently agreed to settle a class action lawsuit involving approximately 500 current and former delivery drivers. The lawsuit was originally filed on allegations that the delivery drivers “were not paid enough and their expenses were not fully reimbursed”. The 11 franchise locations in the lawsuit included Loveland, Mason, West Chester, and Northern Kentucky.
Delivery driver graphics; Image courtesy of mohamed_hassan via Pixabay, www.pixabay.com
Preliminary approval of the $ 900,000 settlement was granted earlier this month by a federal judge in Cincinnati. The judge, US District Judge Matthew McFarland, was scheduled to hold a hearing on June 21 to finalize the settlement.
Commenting on the matter, Phil Krzeski, the drivers’ lawyer, said:
“I think it’s a great result for a number of drivers in southwest Ohio and north Kentucky. We hope this money makes a big difference for a lot of people.”
Pete Buscani, a spokesman for LaRosa, stepped in and said, “The case was about a franchisee and he didn’t know the details.” He added, “Often cases are settled for many reasons, including the cost and hassle of litigation.”
What happened? What caused the lawsuit to be filed in the first place? According to the lawsuit, “the franchises have not paid the delivery drivers enough for the costs they incurred with their own vehicles.” The lawsuit also alleged that instead of reimbursing drivers, “drivers were reimbursed for their actual vehicle costs based on a percentage of the price of each order between 6.5 and 7.5 percent”. At the end of the day, drivers were getting just $ 0.38 per mile, far less than the “IRS standard corporate mileage, which was 57.5 cents per mile last year.”
In addition, the lawsuit states: “It is undisputed that food suppliers must pay minimum wage workers for expenses incurred when they use their own vehicles.” It also states that drivers, many of whom earned an hourly wage well below the minimum wage, because they received tips, “did jobs like folding pizza boxes and cleaning, which in these times had to be paid a higher wage. ”
This latest lawsuit is not an isolated incident. In fact, there are nearly 40 other lawsuits in many other states, with similar allegations, filed against LaRosa’s franchises Papa Johns, Domino’s, and Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches. One of these lawsuits was filed against LaRosa’s Inc. However, this case was dismissed in December on the grounds that it was “unfounded”.
$ 900,000 settlement in class action lawsuit against LaRosa delivery drivers
The pizzeria chain in Cincinnati is paying $ 900,000 to settle the lawsuit of underpaid drivers