Wal-Mart settles 63 lawsuits
Wal-Mart and attorneys for the plaintiffs have jointly announced the settlement of 63 wage and hour class action lawsuits that have been pending against the company for several years. Each of the settlements is subject to approval by the trial court, and the total amount to be paid will depend on the amount of claims that are submitted by class members. Under the agreements, the total will be at least USD352 million, but no more than USD640 million. Also, as part of the settlements, Wal-Mart has agreed to continue to use various electronic systems and other measures designed to maintain compliance with its wage and hour policies and applicable law. As a result of the settlement, the company will record an after-tax charge to continuing operations in its fiscal fourth quarter of approximately USD250 million. "Resolving this litigation is in the best interest of our company, our shareholders and our associates," said Tom Mars, EVP and General Counsel, Wal-Mart. "Many of these lawsuits were filed years ago and the allegations are not representative of the company we are today. Our policy is to pay associates for every hour worked and to provide rest and meal breaks. This is a commitment we make to the more than 1.4 million associates who choose to work for Wal-Mart and serve our customers and members every day. We have worked hard to have the right communication, processes and systems in place to help us live up to this commitment."
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