Cook claims Dallas Chinese restaurant altered payroll records

By Michelle Keahey, East Texas Bureau | Dec 3, 2012

SHERMAN - A cook has filed a lawsuit against a Dallas Chinese restaurant that claims she and other cooks were not paid overtime wages and altered payroll records after she filed a complaint with the Department of Labor. 

Marlene Lopez, and all others similarly situated, filed suit against Mr. Chopsticks Inc. and Numchai Tamprateep on April 3 in the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division. The case was moved to the Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division on Nov. 28.

Lopez worked as a cook at defendant's Chinese Restaurant and Food Delivery Service from December 2000 through January 2012.

The plaintiff allegedly worked an average of 60 hours a week and was paid an average hourly rate between $9.00 and $11.00 per hour, but was not paid the extra half time rate for any overtime hours worked above 40 hours as required by the Fair Labor Standards Act.

According to the lawsuit, Lopez filed a complaint with the Department of Labor in October 2011 and following that complaint, the defendant allegedly ordered that all of the computerized payroll records be altered to create the appearance that the employees were paid at a lower hourly rate and that all employees were paid the time-and-a-half overtime rate for each overtime hours worked.

The plaintiff is asking for an award of double damages, attorney’s fees, all overtime wages still owed and court costs.

Lopez is represented by Dallas attorney J. H. Zidell. A jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Ron Clark is assigned to the case.

Case No. 4:12-cv-00737

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