When there is a case filed against truck companies, they often dodge the judgments by providing various excuses. Bankruptcy and shell companies are the types of excuses the truckers use. An investigation done by the USA Today Network exposed that few port trucking enterprises have made use of legal loopholes, bankruptcies, and shell companies for break free from judgments declared by the judges of the labor court. The investigation discloses that the port trucking agencies that serve eminent retailers apply such tactics for taking advantage of the drivers.
The particular investigation has probed the California labor commissioner and the court cases that were put on record by over 1,100 port truck drivers. Around 60 agencies have been found responsible for the violation of the law. Around 12 companies have successfully dodged the judgments that were raised against them by transferring the assets into new business names. Some companies have delayed the paying and filed for bankruptcy protection. They have created pressure on the drivers to agree to receive the settlements.
In the year 2015, the California labor commissioner’s hearing officer had drawn the conclusion that Fargo Trucking remained unsuccessful to pay overtime and inaccurately charged drivers for the expenses of the truck. He ordered Fargo to pay $8.7 million to its drivers. It is because Fargo has violated the state labor laws.
In place of paying the judgment, the owners of Fargo abandoned their retail clients, ravaged the agency of its assets, and then begin over with completely new enterprise names resulting in break free from the judgment. After that, the company did a comeback in business under the new name ‘ Express FTC’ and heave cargo in the same trucks for the same old clients and from the same building that was previously in the ownership of Fargo. The shocking part is that the drivers still have not given the due payment.
In the year 2008, a law has been passed by California that agreed to ban the older big rigs from providing assistance to the ports and to use less of the harmful diesel fumes. In Southern California, most of the trucking agencies made a response by shouldering the cost onto the truckers who were independent and forced them into the agency sponsored lease for boasting the programs.
A major portion of the drivers’ weekly earning goes off to the expenses along with the cost of maintenance, rig’s lease, fuel, supplies, parking, and insurance. There are many drivers who work hard for up to 20 hours each day for per hour-based earning after the expenses. They keep on working because of the contracts that permit the trucking enterprises for claiming back the trucks of the drivers. They also keep the money that is already paid in the direction of purchasing them.
It was known that labor complaints were registered against over 140 trucking agencies one of which is Fargo Trucking. The big shot companies dissent from hiding assets for avoiding paying the drivers the money that they deserve. As per the USA Today Network, the court filings and the public records display that several owners altered the names of the companies but still continuing the jobs with the same trucks.
In many cases, the lawyers approached by the drivers blame the agencies of fraudgery in the documents of the court. They instigated the evidence that the proprietors shifted the trucks, cash and the customers to the newly developed businesses with liaison to the original possessor.
According to the analysis of the records of the California labor commissioner done by the USA Today Network, the trucking agencies can smoothly hide the assets and dodge the paying judgments as the average time between the complaint and the judgment is approximately 21 months. Some cases even take more than 3 years.
In between the year 2012 and 2016, the port truck drivers were given $37 million of awards in the form of back pay and penalties. But, the labor commissioner was capable of tracking only $3 million that is paid to the drivers as founded by the USA Today Network.
The attorneys’ advice can help truck drivers to a great extent. The documents and evidence must be kept properly, and the drivers must not break the law.