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Hugler v. SJCMG, Inc.

United States District Court, C.D. California

April 10, 2017

EDWARD HUGLER, [1] Acting Secretary of Labor, United States Department of Labor, Plaintiff,
v.
SJCMG INC., dba MISSION GRILL, a California corporation; JOHN GILLOTTI, an individual, and as managing agent of the Corporate Defendant; and JUAN FARIAS, an individual, and as managing agent of the Corporate Defendant, Defendants. Employee Name Start Date End Date Total Back Wages Total Liquidated Damages Total Interest Due Total Due Payment No. Due Date Amount Due Interest Due Total Payment Due

          Complaint Filed: July 20, 2016

          Trial Dated: September 12, 2017

          Janet M. Herold Daniel J. Chasek Natalie Nardecchia M. Cristopher Santos Attorneys for the Plaintiff Acting Secretary of Labor

          CONSENT JUDGMENT AND ORDER

          ANDREW J. GUILFORD U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE

         Plaintiff Acting Secretary of Labor Edward Hugler and Defendants SJCMG, INC., dba MISSION GRILL ("Mission Grill"), JOHN GILLOTTI ("Gillotti"), and JUAN FARIAS ("Farias") (collectively "Defendants") have agreed to resolve the matters in controversy in this civil action and consent to the entry of this Consent Judgment for violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA").

         I. LIABILITY

         1. The Secretary filed a Complaint alleging that Defendants violated Sections 7, 11(c), 15(a)(2), and 15(a)(5) of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, as amended ("FLSA"), 29 U.S.C. §§ 207, 211(c), 215(a)(2), and 215(a)(5).

         2. Defendants admit that the Court has jurisdiction over the parties and subject matter of this civil action. Defendants further admit that venue lies in the central district court for the District of California.

         3. The Secretary and Defendants waive Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law.

         4. Defendants acknowledge that they and any individual or entity acting on their behalf or at their direction or in conjunction with Defendants have notice of, and understand, the provisions of this Consent Judgment and Order.

         5. Defendants admit that at all relevant times SJCMG, Inc., dba Mission Grill was an enterprise engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce within the meaning of Section 3(s)(1)(A) of the FLSA, 29 U.S.C. § 203(s)(1)(A).

         6. Defendants admit that at all relevant times Mission Grill, Gillotti, and Farias were employers of Mission Grill employees within the meaning of Section 3(d) of the FLSA, 29 U.S.C. § 203(d).

         7. Defendants admit that, in violation of Sections 7 and 15(a)(2) of the FLSA, during the period from July 20, 2013 to September 23, 2015, Defendants failed to pay employees time and a half their regular rate for hours that employees worked over 40 in a workweek. These violations occurred as a result of Defendants' practice of paying employees their straight time rate, instead of time and a half, for hours worked over 40 in a workweek, as well as due to Defendants' practice of making unlawful deductions for the cost of uniforms, cash register shortages, and other business expenses.

         8. Defendants admit that, in violation of Section 11(c) of the FLSA, during the period from July 20, 2013 to September 23, 2015, Defendants failed to make, keep, and preserve accurate records of the wages, hours, and other conditions and practices of employment.

         9. Defendants understand and expressly acknowledge that demanding or accepting any of the monies due under this Order to any current or former employees under this Consent Judgment and Order, threatening any employee for accepting monies due under this Consent Judgment and Order, or threatening any employee for exercising any of his or her rights under or related to the FLSA is specifically prohibited and may subject Defendants to equitable and legal damages, including punitive damages and civil contempt.

         10. Defendants agree to take all steps necessary, as set forth herein, to secure and make payment of the funds due under this judgment.

         II. INJUNCTION

         It is therefore, upon motion of the attorneys for the Secretary, and for cause shown, HEREBY ORDERED, ADJUDGED, AND DECREED that under Section 17 of the FLSA, 29 U.S.C. § 217, Defendants and their agents, family members, attorneys, supervisors, managers, co-employers, employees, successors-in-interest, officers, owners, agents, or directors, and all those in active concert or participation with Defendants or acting on their behalf or at their direction, are permanently enjoined and restrained from violating the provisions of the FLSA, in any of the following manners:

         11. Defendants shall not, contrary to Sections 7 and 15(a)(2) of the FLSA, 29 U.S.C. §§ 207 and 215(a)(2), pay any of their employees who in any workweek are engaged in commerce or the production of goods for commerce, or who are employed in an enterprise engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce, within the meaning of the FLSA, less than time and one half the employees' regular rate for hours worked in excess of 40 hours in a workweek. Defendants shall not attempt, in any way, to coerce their employees into accepting straight time pay for hours over forty in a workweek - this includes but is not limited to coercing employees into signing waivers of their FLSA rights, which would be unenforceable in any event. Defendants shall not deduct from employees' wages the cost of uniforms, cash register shortages, or other expenses.

         12. Defendants shall pay all non-exempt employees for all hours worked, including time and one half for hours worked over 40 in a workweek, regardless of whether such employees are paid on a "salary." 13. Defendants shall not alter or manipulate any time or pay records to reduce the number of hours actually worked by an employee in a given workweek.

         14. Defendants shall not, contrary to Section 11(c) of the FLSA, 29 U.S.C. § 211(c), and 29 C.F.R. Part 516, fail to make, keep, and preserve accurate records of the wages, hours, and other work conditions and practices of each and every employee who performs any work for Defendants. To this end, Defendants shall procure, if necessary, and install a time clock at each work location and ensure that each employee does the following: (i) begins work each day by clocking/punching in as soon as the employee enters the worksite and/or employer's premises; (ii) begins any uninterrupted work-free meal period of 30 minutes or more by clocking/punching out; (iii) ends any uninterrupted work-free meal period of 30 minutes or more by clocking/punching back in; (iv) ends work each day by clocking/punching out just before the employee leaves the worksite and/or employer's premises.

         15. Defendants shall also post the contact information for Wage Hour (Assistant District Director Tony Pham, 770 City Drive South, Ste. 5710, Orange, CA 92868 - (714) 621-1650) prominently next to the time keeping system so that employees, if they dispute the hours shown on their time cards, can immediately contact Wage Hour to report any discrepancies or ask any questions. The information must include a statement that employee ...


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