Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia Settles Misclassification Claims with Two Companies

Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia announced the settlement of allegations that companies had violated worker protection laws including allegations that two companies had misclassified workers as independent contractors.

WASHINGTON, DC – Attorney General Brian L. Schwalb today announced that three companies operating in the District – Fetch Package, Inc. (Fetch), Potomac Foods Company, and Food Works Group, LLC (Food Works) – will pay over $150,000 to affected workers and $77,000 to the District in penalties to resolve allegations of violations of the District’s worker protection laws that deprived District workers of overtime pay, timely final paychecks, and benefits including paid sick leave and paid family leave.

“This Office will continue to stand up for District workers and fight to ensure they get the full pay and benefits they are entitled to under the law. We will also ensure that unscrupulous employers cannot gain unfair competitive advantages at their workers’ expense,” said Attorney General Schwalb. “These settlements help put District residents’ hard-earned money back into their pockets where it belongs and help level the playing field for law-abiding businesses.”

Fetch Package, Inc. partners with apartment buildings to outsource package receipt and delivery for residents. Packages are sent to a Fetch warehouse and Fetch delivers them directly to tenants. OAG alleged that Fetch misclassified 10 delivery drivers as independent contractors, denying them sick leave benefits and compensation they were owed under District employment law.

Potomac Foods Company operated a Burger King restaurant franchise on Connecticut Avenue Northwest until December 2022. After an investigation, OAG alleged that Potomac Foods failed to promptly pay workers their final paychecks after closing and failed to consistently pay an overtime premium to its eligible employees from 2020 to 2022. District law requires employers to pay terminated employees their final paychecks within 24 hours or the next business day.

Food Works Group is a food systems and business consulting company. In February 2024, OAG began investigating Food Works Group for allegedly misclassifying employees as independent contractors, failing to provide paid sick leave and Universal Paid Leave benefits, retaliating against a worker who made a complaint about the misclassification, and discriminating against a pregnant worker in violation of the District’s Human Rights Act.

Under the terms of the settlements:

  • Fetch will pay over $100,000 to impacted delivery drivers, pay over $50,000 to the District, begin classifying all eligible workers correctly, and submit an annual report to the District regarding the company’s compliance with District law.
  • Potomac Foods will pay $24,020.76 to impacted workers and $22,500 to the District. The company is also required to submit annual reports for 2024 and for any future District locations.
  • Food Works Group will pay $28,000 to current and former employees who were impacted, pay $5,000 to the District, correct business practices to come into compliance with the District’s labor laws and Human Rights Act, and provide written certification of compliance to OAG.

The settlement agreements are available here for FetchPotomac Foods, and Food Works Group.

These matters were handled by Assistant Attorneys General Sarah Levine, Jude Nwaokobia, and Zack Hill and Workers’ Rights and Antifraud Section Chief Graham Lake.

Source: Attorney General Schwalb Secures Over $227,000 for Workers & DC in Multiple Wage Theft Actions

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