CLEVELAND — A 5 On Your Side investigation into a delivery company in Euclid is now leading to a new federal lawsuit filed by its workers. Our first story focused on Inpax Shipping Solutions that delivers packages for Amazon where nine workers came to us saying they were not getting paid correctly.
“I had seen the video and I was like it's about time someone spoke out,” said former worker at Inpax William Wunsch. He saw our investigation where other former Inpax workers spoke out.
"That was one of the first issues we had was pay,” said Antonio Wright.
"Some people might go in for 6 days and they might only get paid for two,” said Randy Huggins.
"I felt like I was betrayed. I was lied to,” said Mary Eberhardt.
Wunsch said the same thing happened to him. He said one payday, things weren't right.
"So, then I went back to the next check. I was owed more,” said Wunsch. “Went back to the next check and was still owed more."
It just so happens that attorney Chris Wido from the Spitz Law Firm also saw our investigation and turned to his wife and said, “Boy, I really wish one of the people who work there would contact us because we can help them."
Wunsch did just that. "I felt that everybody out there needs to know that this is what's really going on," Wunsch told us.
The lawsuit alleges that Inpax is not paying its workers overtime. The attorneys called it "fuzzy math." It states Inpax promises people $140/day when workers start. A typical day is about 10 hours. So, that's $14/hour. The suit claims that Inpax only pays about $9.33/hour and the rest is made up for with a bonus which skirts overtime laws.
"Essentially not paying (workers) their proper overtime, (Inpax is) stealing time, money and that time and money equate to real life things,” said attorney Brian Spitz.
"I'm a single dad. I have a 9-year-old daughter who is my life,” said Wunsch.
This lawsuit brings up a past suit in Illinois where in 2017, Inpax settled the bad overtime complaint there. All totaled Inpax paid out around $8,100.
Wido said Inpax just continued its questionable practices anyway. "Instead of fixing the problem like they should have, they instead concocted a scheme to make their employees think they're getting paid overtime when they're not,” Wido said.
He also told us at, one point, Inpax workers were allowed to log their own hours, but then managers took over that responsibility. “It's my understanding that it's at that point that the missing days, missing hours and things like that began to happen,” said Wido.
It’s just like what Huggins told us in our first story. "This next check comes around. They short me a day on my check," he said at the time.
With this new lawsuit, the attorneys are hoping for collective action adding more people from our area and around the country who may have had similar problems with Inpax pay.
"At the end of the day, I want to see (workers) with a reimbursement in their hand for the money that they rightfully earned through hard work,” said Spitz.
"I want Inpax to change its practices to comply with the law. If they're unwilling or unable to do that, then I think they should reevaluate their business model,” Wido said.
"We all have family,” said Wunsch. “We all have kids. We all have expenses."
In our first report, we heard from both Inpax and Amazon that said they were looking into the claims. Several employees have told us that has happen with managers visiting the Euclid site.
Amazon released a statement in our earlier report that stands true now:
We are committed to ensuring that employees of our delivery service partners are fairly compensated and treated with respect. Ensuring drivers have a safe, positive experience is important to us, and drivers have a number of ways to share comments or concerns. We’re working with the delivery service partner to quickly investigate these issues and support drivers.”
5 On Your Side Investigators have now reached out to Inpax asking vital questions about the new federal lawsuit. We have not heard back from it.
Here's a previous statement it made during our first story on problems like the ones revealed in the new lawsuit:
“We aim to provide a work environment where our drivers feel comfortable raising concerns. When we are made aware of an issue, we work closely with the employee to investigate and, when needed, make things right. We are looking into these claims immediately and will take appropriate action.”
Read the full lawsuit filed in Cleveland against Inpax.