9:51am PT by Eriq Gardner
New York Parking Spot Guardians Claim TV Studios Owe Them Overtime
Last year, it was interns. This year, it's New York-based parking production assistants who are trafficking in class-action lawsuits asserting violations of labor law on the part of Hollywood studios.
On Tuesday, CBS, Showtime and Relativity Media were the latest to be herded into court by those whose job it is to secure sets, block pedestrians and safeguard production vehicles in the limited parking space on New York streets. The plaintiffs say they worked on such shows as Elementary, Limitless and Billions. They are paid about $150 per 12-hour shift.
According to the newest lawsuit, the plaintiffs are required to work in excess of 40 hours per week, but haven't been getting the time-and-a-half rate for overtime worked. The studios allegedly violate the Fair Labor Standards Act and other wage laws "by engaging in a systematic scheme of altering Plaintiffs' paychecks," states the complaint.
This is the third such lawsuit of its kind in the past month. Previously, NBC and Sony were sued by parking production assistants on the series Blacklist and Warner Bros. was sued over The Following.
“Matters like this are usually handled through discussion among representatives for the parties before a lawsuit is filed," responds a CBS spokesperson. "CBS is unaware of having received any such communication before this case was filed, and are now reviewing the matter.”
The parking production assistants are being represented by James Vagnini at Valli Kane & Vagnini.