Kohl’s Misclassification of Assistant Store Managers New York Class Action

The first sentence of the complaint for this class action makes a flat statement: “Retail employers must pay overtime to their assistant managers unless their primary duty is management.” It attributes this requirement to New York Labor Law. However, the complaint contends, Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. and Kohl’s Corporation misclassify assistant stores managers as exempt from overtime rules and do not pay them for overtime hours.

According to the complaint, Kohl’s assistant managers should not be classified as exempt: Kohl’s “assign[s] non-management work to its Assistant Store Managers (ASMs) which generally takes up more than 50% of their time, closely supervises their work, and pays them only a little more than its non-exempt employees.”

Unfortunately, the complaint claims, “It schedules them to work 45 hours or more each week (over 50 during holiday seasons), but schedules so few hourly staff that in fact they regularly work 50-60 hours per week. Kohl’s classifies all of its ASMs as exempt ‘executive’ and does not pay them overtime.”

Plainiff Jenna Graziano lives in Newburgh, New York. She worked as an Assistant Store Manager of Human Resources and Operations for Kohl’s in Newburgh from roughly September 2007 to October 2015.

The complaint alleges, “Although there are categories of ASMs that focus on different areas, the basic duties of an ASM are the same.” The ASMs’ “primary duty is to perform mostly the non-exempt labor of the stores in which they work, including unloading trucks, unpacking merchandise, filling online orders, stocking shelves, [performing] customer service and operating cash registers.” The complaint claims that the duties of various categories of ASMs are “similar with only minor differences.” It also classifies all ASMs as exempt.

Kohl’s tries to keep its payroll expenses down, the complaint alleges, with a practice of substituting ASMs for hourly associates. “It has done this in part by sending hourly associates home before the end of their shift and not replacing them when they call[] out. Kohl’s then requires the ASMs to finish the hourly tasks of the hourly associates who had been scheduled but were sent home early or not replaced.”

Kohl’s normally schedules ASMs for 45 hours per week. During holiday weeks, from the week before Thanksgiving through the end of December, they are scheduled for six days and 54 hours per week. During inventory, they are schedule for 60 hours per week.

ASMs are also closely monitored. When they are assigned some management duties, the complaint says, these are routine and closely directed and supervised by others.

The class for this action is all those who have worked for Kohl’s as ASMs in New York.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Employment

Most Recent Case Event

Kohl’s Misclassification of Assistant Store Managers New York Complaint

July 1, 2020

The first sentence of the complaint for this class action makes a flat statement: “Retail employers must pay overtime to their assistant managers unless their primary duty is management.” It attributes this requirement to New York Labor Law. However, the complaint contends, Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. and Kohl’s Corporation misclassify assistant stores managers as exempt from overtime rules and do not pay them for overtime hours.

Kohl’s Misclassification of Assistant Store Managers New York Complaint

Case Event History

Kohl’s Misclassification of Assistant Store Managers New York Complaint

July 1, 2020

The first sentence of the complaint for this class action makes a flat statement: “Retail employers must pay overtime to their assistant managers unless their primary duty is management.” It attributes this requirement to New York Labor Law. However, the complaint contends, Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. and Kohl’s Corporation misclassify assistant stores managers as exempt from overtime rules and do not pay them for overtime hours.

Kohl’s Misclassification of Assistant Store Managers New York Complaint
Tags: Employment Violations, Misclassifying Employees as Exempt, Unpaid Overtime