GAT ground support worker files lawsuit for unpaid wages

By Michelle Keahey | Jun 22, 2012


NEW ORLEANS - An airline ground support worker has filed a lawsuit against his former employer claiming his pay was deducted for lunch breaks he didn't take.

Claiming violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act, Robert Hand, individually and on behalf of other similarly situated, filed suit against GAT Airline Ground Support Inc. and G.A.T. – Airline
Ground Support Inc. on June 5 in federal court in New Orleans.

GAT employs personnel who provide ground support aviation services including under wing, passenger screening, and skycap services for various airlines at numerous airports across the country.

Hand worked for GAT through the months of April and May 2012. He states that he terminated his employment as a result of unlawful pay practices.

As company policy, GAT automatically deducts one hour of break time for meals for employees. Hand states that employees systematically work during and through these periods, resulting in a significant amount of compensable work without pay.

He argues that management knew about this practice, but did not take measures to correct the improper payroll deductions.

The defendants are accused of violating the Fair Labor Standards Act, breach of contract, quantum meruit, and unjust enrichment.

The proposed class will include all current and former employees who were paid on an hourly basis by GAT within the last 10 years preceding the date of this lawsuit.

The plaintiff is asking the court for an award of damages for unpaid wages, liquidated damages, attorney's fees, court costs, and interest.

Hand is represented by George B. Recile, Preston L. Hayes, and Patricia E. Pannell of Chehardy, Sherman, Ellis, Murray, Recile, Griffith, Stakelum & Hayes in Metairie. A jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge Susie Morgan is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:12-cv-01432

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