Seattle’s Office of Labor Standards and two pawn-loan companies have settled allegations of wage violations for more than $383,000. From that total, $379,126 will go to 253 employees and $4,748 to the city of Seattle.
The city office alleged the employers, Cash America West and First Cash, did not pay Seattle’s minimum-wage rate, give employees paid sick time, provide rest and meal breaks or give written notices of employment information from October 2016 until June 2022.
Both employers are under the same parent company, Cash America, which has more than 17,000 employees and 1,000 locations nationwide, including three in Seattle.
The company said it cooperated with the Office of Labor Standards to ensure “employees continue to be well-compensated and have full access to all possible benefits.”
Minimum-wage, paid sick-and-safe time and wage-theft ordinances are the most common violations among Seattle businesses, said OLS Director Steven Marchese.
“This settlement shows that violations of Seattle’s labor laws can happen regardless of the size of the business,” Marchese said.
In November 2021, the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed a lawsuit against Cash America in the Northern Texas District Court, alleging it made pawn loans to active-duty servicemen and their dependents that violated the Military Lending Act.
The OLS is Seattle’s labor laws enforcement authority. In the past few months, it has resolved labor-related investigations against Seattle City Light and companies such Trader Joe’s and Patagonia.