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California Employment Law Victory: Matern Law Group Secures $5.5 Million Settlement Against Packaging Industry

Reyna v. Westrock Class Action Lawsuit

Matern Law Group, a leading plaintiff-side employment law firm in California, is proud to announce a major victory for workers. We recently secured a $5.5 million settlement on behalf of all hourly non-exempt employees who were denied proper compensation by their employer, WestRock Company. A federal judge in California has granted final approval for a $5.5 million settlement in a lawsuit involving over 2,000 workers and multiple packaging companies.

U.S. District Judge Beth Labson Freeman granted final approval of the settlement involving Alicia Reyna and Humberto Castrejon against WestRock Co. and WestRock Services. The lawsuit was filed under the Fair Labor Standards Act, California Labor Code, and the Private Attorneys General Act (PAGAAs part of the settlement, $187,500 will go to California’s Labor & Workforce Development Agency under PAGA, which allows workers to sue for labor law violations on behalf of themselves, other workers, and the state. Another $62,500 in PAGA penalties will be distributed among the workers.

The settlement also includes $1.54 million in attorney fees, $23,540.60 in litigation costs, $22,000 for settlement administration, and service award payments for Reyna and Castrejon.

The lawsuit alleged that these packaging companies engaged in widespread violations of California labor laws, including:

  • Wage and Hour Violations: The lawsuit further contended that the companies failed to properly pay workers for all their work time. This could include unpaid hours for pre- and/or post-shift tasks.
  • Meal and Rest Break Denials: California law mandates meal and rest breaks for employees. The suit alleged that the companies denied these breaks or failed to provide uninterrupted breaks.

A Step Forward for Worker Fairness

This settlement represents a significant step forward for worker fairness in the packaging industry.  Matern Law Group is committed to protecting California workers from exploitation, and this case highlights the importance of holding companies accountable for labor law violations. The $5.5 million settlement will provide much-needed compensation to the affected workers.

What This Means for California Workers

This case serves as an important reminder for California workers in various industries, not just packaging. Here are some key takeaways:

  • Track Your Work Hours: Keep a record of all your work time, including breaks taken and time spent waiting for assignments. This documentation is crucial if you believe you are not being paid for all your hours.
  • Meal and Rest Breaks Are Your Right: California law guarantees meal and rest breaks. Employers cannot pressure you to skip breaks or deny you uninterrupted breaks.

If you suspect your employer is denying you breaks or failing to pay you for all your work time, contact Matern Law Group for a free consultation. Our team of experienced employment lawyers can assess your situation and advise you on your legal options. Don’t hesitate to fight for fair treatment in the workplace.

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