A California judge has granted preliminary approval to CVS Caremark Corp.’s $12.75 million settlement of claims it shorted roughly 78,000 workers on pay for time they spent in security checks. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Richard E. Rico issued a written tentative ruling before the start of a hearing, indicating he was planning to approve the settlement proposed by named Plaintiffs Kimberly Murphy, Elizabeth Ortiz and Gail Miller.
Ms. Murphy filed the proposed class action in July 2011, alleging that for years CVS had required her to submit to security inspections and label her personal property while off the clock. It was alleged that since 2007, CVS has had a policy of not compensating hourly employees in California for time spent waiting for and undergoing security inspections after clocking out but before they leave the store.
Ms. Murphy filed her motion for preliminary settlement approval in early September. She also asked Judge Rico for permission to amend her complaint to fold in Ortiz and Miller as additional Plaintiffs. Ortiz and Miller had filed a separate suit against CVS alleging wage violations relating to bag checks, including a claim under California’s Private Attorney General Act, which provides employees with the opportunity to bring claims on behalf of all aggrieved employees to enforce the state’s labor laws. That suit, pending in California federal court, will be dismissed once the settlement in the instant action is approved. The potential class members covered by the settlement will receive $100 to $200 on average under the settlement.
The case is Kimberly Murphy v. Caremark CVS Corp. et al. in the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Los Angeles.