After last week’s rumours, Kim Kardashian is being sued by her former gardening staff for wage theft. Seven staff members who formerly tended to the garden at her $60 million Hollywood Hidden Hills mansion will stand against her estate in court.
The lawsuit that was filed in LA on Monday claims that Kardashian was always late to pay her workers, withheld 10% of their pay for tax purposes and subsequently failed to forward that money to the government. Additionally, she declined to pay them overtime and the staff were often made to work without meal breaks or rest breaks. The former staff also cited Kardashian’s failure to provide them with itemised pay stubs.
Among the plaintiffs, one teenaged-employee claimed that he was forced to work in excess of the 48-hour limit for an underaged employee. Another claims that he was fired as soon as he confronted his employer about the overtime pay, tax issue and lack of breaks.
These employees worked through a third party vendor which was hired by Ms Kardashian “to provide ongoing services” as stated by a spokesperson for the businesswoman to Page Six. “Kim is not party to the agreement made between the vendor and their workers, therefore she is not responsible for how the vendor manages their business and the agreements they have made directly with their staff.”
A source who is allegedly close to Kardashian claimed that “Kim has never not paid a vendor for their services and hopes that the issue between these workers and the vendor who hired them can be amicably resolved soon.”
The group of gardeners are being represented by Kim Legal, a firm that is also engaged in litigation against Kardashian’s ex-husband, Kanye West, on behalf of workers who were involved in his Nebuchadnezzar Opera and were also underpaid. A further lawsuit has been filed against West on behalf of a former Yeezy designer, also citing unpaid wages.
Frank Kim of Kim Legal suggested that there is a culture of wage theft in Los Angeles and a systemic exploitation of everyday workers by their celebrity estates. “My firm is currently investigating other potential violations against these defendants, as well as other powerful families and businesses on behalf of everyday workers.”