Schedule Online

The Whole Industry Does it This Way

Nov 03, 2023

“This is the way we’ve always done it.” Unfortunately, this is not a legal defense and Publix supermarket is finding this out the hard way.

Three former Publix employees filed a class action lawsuit in Florida alleging they were not paid for overtime by the company. The former assistant department managers allege Publix did not pay them for pre-shift and post-shift work, they spent time working during unpaid breaks, and spent time communicating with supervisors after they had ready clocked out.

Since it’s now a class action lawsuit, Plaintiffs’ lawyers are seeking any assistant department manager with similar circumstances to join the case.

Think this can only happen to large corporations? Please think again.

Here are ways companies can (and will) get into trouble when paying wages to their employees:

1. Misclassification - calling a worker a 1099 independent contractor, when the worker is legally an employee

2. Unpaid Wages/Overtime- paying an employee a salary only when they should be paid hourly and overtime.

3. Off the clock - allowing employees to work when they are clocked out. This includes performing tasks (1) during an unpaid lunch break, (2) before clocking in or (3) after clocking out.

This even includes minor tasks like answering a text message while clocked out.

How businesses can avoid these types of lawsuits:

1. Train managers so they know what to look out for and what is illegal

2. Consult with an employment attorney and conduct a legal HR Audit before a legal disaster arises and before a complaint is filed.

Businesses can substantially limit risk and reduce exposure to employee lawsuits if they follow the above two best practices.


Have we met? I’m a Florida employment lawyer, workplace investigator and workplace trainer on employment laws. I help my clients navigate tricky workplace situations and comply with employment laws through legal advice and counseling, workshops/customized trainings for managers, HR and preparation of legal agreements.


  1. Legal Advice - Employment Law

The Wannos Law Firm, PA provides employment counseling and legal advice to clients in Florida. Please contact the firm for additional information on how we can help with you or your client's employment needs. Schedule a consultation.

  1. Employment Law Trainings

We train CEO's HR Departments, Supervisors and Employees on the employment laws affecting the business. More Information Here.

  1. Employment Mediation

Karly has practiced employment law for 16+ years and has represented both employees and employers throughout the course of litigation, making her an effective and understanding mediator. Online Scheduling and Quick Availability. 

  1. Workplace Investigations

The Wannos Law Firm, PA provides prompt, independent and efficient workplace investigations in response to employee complaints of harassment, discrimination, retaliation and serious policy violations. Schedule a call to discuss how we can help.

Remember to subscribe to our newsletter, listen to The Employment Experience Podcast, and follow me on LinkedIn to get important employment law updates!

The Wannos Law Firm, P.A. provides legal advice to Florida businesses. Karly Wannos is a workplace investigator for claims of discrimination, harassment and retaliation, Florida employment law mediator and provides training to businesses on employment laws. 

Request More Info

Don't Miss an Employment Law Update!

Join our newsletter for updates on the most important employment laws, delivered to your inbox!

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.