Class Action Targeted Lost Wages Over Lunch Breaks at Two CWE Restaurants


Scape and its now-shuttered sister restaurant, Crepes Etc., are located in Maryland Plaza. - FLICKR/PAUL SABLEMAN
  • Scape and its now-shuttered sister restaurant, Crepes Etc., are located in Maryland Plaza.

A class-action lawsuit filed last month alleged that workers at two Central West End restaurants were deprived of pay due to company policies that had them logging out for meal breaks. That's even though, the workers alleged, they sometimes did work for their employer during those periods.

The suit was filed by eleven former employees of Scape and its now-shuttered sister restaurant, Crepes Etc., against Maryland Plaza Restaurant LLC. It sought to cover anyone who'd worked at the two restaurants from May 2011 to May 2016.

The lawsuit sought backpay for the half-hour shifts when the workers were off the clock, as well as any overtime accrued as the result of not getting those 30 minutes off.

"At times, Plaintiffs and other similarly situated employees worked during or through their meal breaks," the suit alleges. "Plaintiffs’ meal periods were sometimes interrupted by customers or to perform work-related tasks for Defendant’s benefit during their meal periods. Defendant nonetheless deducted the meal period from the wages of Plaintiffs and those similarly situated."

Bob Koplar, the general counsel for Maryland Plaza Restaurant, said the suit had already been settled. "We don't believe we did anything wrong, and we didn't admit to any wrongdoing," he says.

Koplar said the settlement was reached even before the suit was filed in court. The filing was a formality that, in essence, prevents anyone within the settlement to later file the same claim.

The restaurant workers were represented by attorney Thomas SanFilippo.

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