Apple dealt new class-action lawsuit by 20,000 employees

Hourly wage workers claim the tech giant broke California labor laws by denying them lunch breaks and final paychecks.

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Apple has been hit with yet another class-action lawsuit from its employees. The California Superior Court agreed to give class action status to a case brought against the tech giant by 20,000 disgruntled workers who claim they were denied lunch breaks, rest breaks, and final paychecks, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The employees who brought the suit were hourly wage workers who worked in Apple's retail stores, call-centers, and also as junior engineers, according to the Journal. They allege that Apple knowingly broke California labor laws by not always allowing for breaks.

"Very often workers were not given meal breaks for seven or eight hours, and sometimes not at all," plaintiffs' counsel Tyler Belong told the Journal.

The workers also claim that Apple made it clear they were not to even discuss the company's labor policies, and if they did it could jeopardize their jobs.

This class action case comes at a time when Apple is facing other lawsuits from its employees. Last year, a suit was filed regarding retail store employees having to undergo two mandatory bag searches per day. These employees claim that after they clocked out, they had to stand in line for up to 30 minutes while store managers ensured they weren't smuggling home stolen goods -- thus depriving them of hours of unpaid wages.

Apple is also tangled in a wage-fixing lawsuit with Google, Intel, and Adobe that was brought by employees who allege the tech companies conspired to keep wages low by not hiring each other's workers. Last October, this case was consolidated into a class-action lawsuit that covers nearly 65,000 employees.

The new class action lawsuit regarding lunch breaks and final paychecks was first filed in 2011; the amount of damages sought by the plaintiffs is not yet known.

CNET contacted Apple for comment. We'll update the story when we get more information.

About the author

Dara Kerr is a staff writer for CNET focused on the sharing economy and tech culture. She grew up in Colorado where she developed an affinity for collecting fool's gold and spirit animals.

 

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