May 17, 2018

Employees allege pre-shift work wasn't paid. Lawsuit estimates more than 10,000 workers affected.

Fidelity Investments call center employees have been underpaid in violation of federal and state law, they allege in a collective and class action filed May 17.

Bailey Reynolds and Helen Martinez allege that Fidelity Investments Institutional Operations Co. and a related company, FMR LLC, violated the federal Fair Labor Standards Act as well as North Carolina and New Mexico laws by requiring employees to perform a number of job tasks without pay before they began answering phone calls.

Employees at North Carolina and New Mexico offices needed substantial time to perform a "litany of tasks" that included booting up computers, running several software programs, and conducting a number of checks and preparations for their daily shifts, the lawsuit alleges. Company managers were aware that employees were performing such work without pay but required them to do it, the federal court complaint says.

Employees "routinely worked 40 hours or more per week," and failing to pay them for the pre-shift work deprived them of compensation that should have been paid at overtime rates, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit was filed by the Law Offices of Gilda A. Hernandez PLLC in Cary, N.C., and Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC in Washington. 

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