NJDOL Halts Work at 27 Boston Market Locations Across New Jersey Due to Workers' Rights Violations


Over $600,000 in back wages found owed to workers, triggering a major intervention by the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJDOL); Boston Market requests a hearing.

In an unprecedented move, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJDOL) has issued 27 stop-work orders to Boston Market locations throughout the state, citing severe violations of workers’ rights and more than $600,000 in back wages owed to 314 employees.

Who: The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Boston Market, and affected employees.

What: Issuing 27 stop-work orders across various Boston Market locations due to multiple workers’ rights violations including unpaid or late payment of wages, failure to maintain records, and failure to pay minimum wage.

When: The orders were issued on August 14, 2023, after a series of investigations that began with a complaint received in November 2022.

Where: The 27 Boston Market locations affected are spread across New Jersey, including areas like Hackensack, Clifton, Hamilton, and more.

Why: The violations discovered by NJDOL amount to a significant breach of workers’ rights, highlighting a failure in adherence to state laws and regulations, and necessitating immediate action.

How: Through extensive investigation and enforcement efforts, NJDOL has found Boston Chicken of NJ, LLC d/b/a Boston Market liable for a total of $2,554,154.30, including back wages, liquidated damages, administrative fees, and penalties.

The probe was initiated when a Boston Market worker filed a complaint at the Hamilton location, leading to nearly three dozen additional grievances against the company's various locations. Assistant Commissioner of NJDOL’s Division of Wage and Hour and Contract Compliance, Joseph Petrecca, emphasized the department's commitment to working with employers to "stop worker exploitation, create sustainable change, and prevent future violations."

Among the violations found were unpaid or late payment of wages, hindrance of the investigation, failure to pay minimum wage, records violations, failure to pay earned sick leave, and failure to maintain records for earned sick leave. These findings triggered the issuance of stop-work orders, a measure used by NJDOL to protect workers and ensure compliance with state laws.

Boston Chicken of NJ, headquartered in Golden, Colo., and the registered agent of the company at Princeton South Corporate Center in Ewing, was notified of the initial findings. The company's C.E.O., Jignesh Pandya, has requested a hearing regarding the stop-work orders.

The situation remains dynamic, with NJDOL continuing to monitor the affected locations and with the ability to assess civil penalties of $5,000 per day against the employer if business is conducted in violation of the order.

This enforcement action is part of a broader effort to safeguard workers' rights in New Jersey. Since the expansion of its power in July 2019, NJDOL has issued 138 stop-work orders, reflecting the department's commitment to ensuring fair treatment and compliance with labor laws across the state.

Below is the complete list of Boston Market locations that were issued a stop-work order:

  • 491 Ridge Rd, North Arlington, NJ 07031
  • 314 Essex Street, Lodi, NJ 07644
  • 180 Hackensack Avenue, Hackensack, NJ 07602
  • 21-20 Broadway, Fair Lawn, NJ 07410
  • 321 Broad Street, Ridgefield, NJ 07657
  • 20 Wycoff Avenue, Waldwick, NJ 07463
  • 395 NJ-17, Mahwah, NJ 07430
  • 175 Kinderkamack Road, Emerson, NJ 07630
  • 275 Livingston Street, North Vale, NJ 07647
  • 471 Central Avenue, East Orange, NJ 07018
  • 247 NJ-10 East, Succasunna, NJ 07876
  • 332 Route 10 West, East Hanover, NJ 07936
  • 1160 US-46, Clifton, NJ 07013
  • 1342 Clifton Avenue, Clifton, NJ 07012
  • 523 Chestnut Street Union, NJ 07083
  • 770 Route 33, Hamilton, NJ 08619
  • 1729 N. Olden Avenue, Ewing Township, NJ 08638
  • 300 Rt-18, East Brunswick, NJ 08816
  • 878 US Rt. 1 North Bound, Edison, NJ 08817
  • 1560 St. Georges Avenue, Avenel, NJ 07001
  • 4159 US 9, Howell, NJ 07731
  • 1103 Broad Street, Shrewsbury, NJ 07702
  • 900 Easton Avenue #165, Somerset, NJ 08873
  • 514 High Street, Mt. Holly, NJ 08060
  • 5716 Blackhorse Pike, Blackwood, NJ 08012
  • 891 Hurffville Road, Woodbury, NJ 08096
  • 301 S. Main Road, Vineland, NJ 08360

For more information on worker benefits and protections, visit myworkrights.nj.gov.

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