* Class action involved 87,500 current and former workers
* Workers to get average of $734
LOS ANGELES, Dec 2 (Reuters) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc WMT.N has agreed to pay $40 million to settle a 2001 class action lawsuit by current and former employees in the state of Massachusetts, who accused the retailer of systematic wage-and-hour violations, the plaintiffs’ attorney said on Wednesday.
The agreement covers up to 87,500 workers employed by Massachusetts Wal-Mart stores between August 1995 and the settlement date on Wednesday, and will result in an average payment of $734 per worker, plaintiffs’ attorney Robert Bonsignore said in a statement.
According to the statement, the workers had accused Wal-Mart of denying workers rest and meal breaks, refusing to pay overtime, and manipulating time cards to lower employees’ pay.
The settlement in Middlesex Superior Court is the largest of a wage-and-hour case in the state’s history, Bonsignore said.
As part of the settlement, Wal-Mart agreed to an injunction that bars it from the conduct that prompted the lawsuit, he said.
A Wal-Mart representative could not be reached for comment.
Last December, Wal-Mart agreed to pay up to $640 million to settle 63 separate lawsuits accusing it of similar violations against current and former workers at its stores nationwide. (Reporting by Gina Keating) (([email protected]; +1 213 955 6776; Reuters Messaging; [email protected]))