A Jefferson Parish worker is suing an auto dealership and an automotive specialty business on grounds of alleged violation of employment law in 2013 and 2014.

Marcial Vado, 68, filed against LaMarque Ford Inc. of Kenner and A & W Auto Detailing of Metairie in the U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Louisiana on April 29, citing employment law violations in an ongoing matter from May 2013 until May 2014.

According to the suit, the plaintiff was hired by A & W to work exclusively at the dealership site on or about May 20, 2013, as an auto detailer for vehicles bought, sold and displayed at the establishment, working between 66 and 72 hours per week from the date of his hiring until May 2, 2014. His work was supervised by both LaMarque and by A & W’s supervisor, Javier Flores.

The complaint states that Vado was made to handle an excessive number of vehicles daily; increasingly reprimanded by personnel in alleged pursuit of exacting standards; sometimes made to clean vehicles twice before the work was considered adequate; and eventually, made to purchase supplies from his own funds.

Alleging that the latter costs brought his income to below federal minimum wage; that no taxes were withheld from his paychecks; and that no overtime was paid, the suit says both defendants acted in bad faith and violated the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Louisiana Wage Payment Act. Vado says he was an employee and not a contractor.

When the plaintiff was terminated on May 2, 2014, he made amicable demand for the balance of wages he believed were due, according to the filing, but without success. Vado seeks restitution, liquidated damages, penalties, attorney’s fees, expenses and costs.

He is represented by Michael Tusa of Sutton, Alker & Rather of Mandeville; and Andrea Agee and Luz Molina of the Stuart H. Smith Law Clinic and Center for Social Justice in New Orleans.

U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Louisiana Case 2:15-cv-01394-LMA-SS

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