Off-the-clock Collective Action Settled by Chicago Transit Authority

June 16, 2011Articles Lexology
Just the other day, I posted about an off-the-clock class action that involved field technicians. In this off-the-clock FLSA collective action, bus drivers claimed that they were not compensated for time that spent driving routes to become familiar with those routes. They must have had a case because a federal judge has now approved a settlement between the Chicago Transit Authority (“CTA”) and the class of bus operators in which these plaintiffs will realize some recovery. The case is entitled Reyes v. Chicago Transit Authority and had been filed in federal court in the Northern District of Illinois.

The settlement will compel the CTA to pay out up to $300,000 to resolve the plaintiffs’ claims. The CTA will also pay $350,000 in attorneys fees. The entire issue involved claims of worked, but unpaid for, time. It appears that the drivers engaged in a practice labeled “cushioning,” which entails their driving various routes that they shifted over to, so they could learn the routes. Therefore, the service would run efficiently and not be impacted. There were approximately 1100 current/ former bus operators who opted in to join the lawsuit (which was filed in February 2010.)

Read the entire article