Lawsuit: Chipolte Accused of Shortchanging Prospects As a consequence of Alleged Coin Scarcity

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Chipolte recently found himself in hot water on allegations that some of its Pennsylvania locations were short of customers.

Are you a fan of Chipolte? If so, you are likely already familiar with the menu and how certain products like queso and guacamole cost extra. However, a recent lawsuit alleges that Chipolte restaurants in Pennsylvania have also shorted out customers due to changes. According to the lawsuit, which is seeking class action status, the popular chain restaurant is guilty of "misappropriating customer dollars and unfair trading practices." As a result, the suit claims customers missed hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not more.

Coins; Image courtesy Michael Longmire via Unsplash, www.unsplash.com

The complaint was brought in the Allegheny County's Common Pleas Court by Frank G. Salpietro, plaintiff's attorney. He said, "We understand this is a top-down policy. We expect to be able to provide more details later."

A spokesman for the Pennsylvania Attorney General also interfered, saying the firm had "received five similar complaints to the one Salpietro filed." But how did customers get understaffed? For example, on Aug. 13, a customer named Megan Fox ordered a burrito from a Chipolte store in Pine City. According to the complaint, their total was $ 8.72. She paid with a $ 20 bill, but instead of getting $ 11.28 back in change, she got back only $ 11. In another example, another customer had a total bill of $ 15.51. She also paid with a $ 20 bill for only $ 4.

Commenting on the matter, Salpietro said the staff had told Fox and the other customers that they had not made any changes. "However, you will not be notified of this until the transaction is complete." He added that the alleged policy "has disproportionately affected poorer customers without access to credit or debit cards". The lawsuit continues:

"This" company policy "not only discriminates against consumers who do not have or do not want to use credit cards, but also leads to tax-free cash gain for Chipotle."

When asked about the policy and in response to the allegations, Laurie Schalow, Chief Corporate Affairs and Food Safety Officer, made the following statement:

Chipotle's policy is to give customers the exact change they owe in cash when purchasing from our restaurants. If there is little change in a restaurant due to the nationwide lack of coins, we will only accept the exact change or other cashless payment methods. Affected restaurants are posted both on the door and inside, and staff have been instructed to notify diners prior to ordering. We encourage customers to do so Contact immediately with concerns so that we can investigate and react quickly to get things right.

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