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$55 Million Verdict in Wal-Mart Drivers’ Class Lawsuit

Elizabeth DiNardo, Esq. | Associate Counsel

On November 23, 2016, a jury in California federal court granted a $55 million verdict to a class of Wal-Mart truck drivers who alleged that the company did not comply with California state labor laws.

The suit, which was originally filed in 2008, was made up of 850 current and former Wal-Mart drivers who claimed that the company’s former compensation policy for drivers was not in compliance with state law. The policy, which was disregarded by Wal-Mart in 2015, compensated drivers based on distance rather than hours spent on the job. Plaintiffs requested back pay for time spent conducting mandatory vehicle inspections both before and after trips, as well as compensation for mandatory layovers and rest breaks.

The jury handed down a $55 million verdict in favor of the plaintiffs. Wal-Mart representatives have publically stated that the company disagrees with the outcome of the case and maintains that Wal-Mart has always paid its drivers in accordance with California law. Representatives for the company have further have stated that Wal-Mart will likely be appealing the decision.

The case is: Ridgeway v. Wal-Mart Stores, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, No. 08-05221

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