$12 Million Settlement for Misclassification Claims by Pharmaceutical Products Delivery Drivers

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From JDSupraRichard Reibstein discusses the settlement of a class action lawsuit involving 1,231 delivery drivers of pharmaceutical products. Richard writes:

PHARMACEUTICAL PRODUCTS PROVIDER TO PAY $11.9 MILLION TO SETTLE IC MISCLASSIFICATION CLASS ACTION BY DELIVERY DRIVERS. A class of delivery drivers has entered into a proposed $11.9 million settlement with a pharmacy services provider for long-term care and post-acute facilities and assisted living and senior living communities. In a collective action brought under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act alleging that the company violated minimum wage and overtime compensation provisions under that statute by misclassifying drivers as independent contractors and not employees, the company vigorously denied the allegations and asserted the drivers were properly classified as independent contractors. However, to date, 1,231 delivery drivers nationwide have affirmatively opted-in and joined the lawsuit.According to the complaint, the work performed by the drivers primarily consisted of driving vehicles to the company’s customers pursuant to routes and schedules mandated by the company and its affiliates and delivering the company’s products to healthcare facilities in accordance with the company’s policies and standards. The proposed settlement, which includes a non-admission of liability clause and was accompanied by a memorandum of law that articulated certain of the company’s defenses, includes nearly $8 million to be divided among the drivers on a pro rata basis dependent upon the number of weeks worked by each driver. It also calls for the payment of approximately $4 million in attorneys’ fees and costs. The average payout per driver will exceed $6,000, and more than 300 drivers will receive net payments of more than $10,000.  The proposed settlement does not, however, require the company to reclassify the drivers as employees. Hager v. Omnicare, Inc., No. 5:19-cv-00484 (S.D. W. Va. Oct. 8, 2021).

Source: Pharmacy Deliveries Remain Target for Independent Contractor Misclassification Claims: October 2021 News Update | Locke Lord LLP – JDSupra

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