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Judge Orders Papa John’s To Pay For Wage Violations

Emanuel Shirazi

A New York judge recently ordered Emstar Pizza Inc., owner of 7 Papa John’s locations in the Brooklyn and Queens area, to pay $800,000 to employees for unpaid wages. For six years, Emstar allegedly underreported employees’ hours, rounded work hours down, and failed to pay overtime.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is also considering taking legal action against the owner of Papa John’s International Inc., John Schnatter. Because the National Labor Relations Board holds parent companies responsible for the actions of its own franchises, Papa John’s would be considered a “joint employer” of Emstar. Back in July, the Board ruled McDonald’s a joint employer to its franchise locations. Because of the ruling, McDonald’s was held liable for labor and wage violations.

Though franchises employ 2/3 of the nation’s low-wage workers, franchisor’s haven’t yet been held accountable for the wage violations of their franchise owners. Do you think corporate franchisor’s should be held accountable for wage violations?

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