In the largest settlement of its kind, on October 28, 2016, a California Superior Court approved a $15 million settlement in a lawsuit called Garrett v. Bank of America, which alleged that California bank tellers should have been provided seats while they performed their jobs. The lawsuit was brought under the California Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA), which allows an employee to sue his or her employer to recover civil penalties under the California Labor Code.
The settlement follows the California Supreme Court’s decision in Kilby v. CVS Pharmacy, Inc., in which the court ruled that California employees are entitled to seats when the nature of their work reasonably permits the use of seats.
Under the settlement, the Bank of America tellers will split 25% of the civil penalties recovered (approx. $ 2.4 million), and the named plaintiffs, Nicole Garrett, Rhonique Green and Olivia Giddings will receive additional payments of $25,000 each. Furthermore, Bank of America has agreed to make seats available to its California tellers from now on.
The law firm of Clapp & Lauinger LLP was one of the lead counsel Garrett and Kilby and is at the forefront of protecting employee rights in California. If you have any questions about your rights under California law, please contact us for a free consultation.