SAN FRANCISCO – The Board of Trustees for Northern California District Council of Laborers, et al. has filed a complaint for audit against Underground Specialties and requests that a federal court issue an injunction for the company to submit to an audit and pay damages.
The complaint filed by the Board’s attorneys brings claims under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act and Labor Management Relations Act. The suit was filed June 21 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.
The Board of Trustees has “the obligation to ensure that contributions required to be made to said trust funds pursuant to collective bargaining agreements are fully and correctly made,” the suit states.
The Board of Trustees is the trustees of the Laborers Health and Welfare Trust Fund for Northern California, Laborers Pension Trust Fund for Northern California, Laborers Vacation-Holiday Trust Fund for Northern California, and Laborers Training and Retraining Trust Fund for Northern California. The trust funds were created as an employee benefit plant to provide “health and welfare, vacation, pension and other benefits for Laborers," the suit states.
The complaint states that Underground Specialties Central Coast Inc. and Underground Specialties Central Coast Inc. signed an agreement with the labor union Northern California District Council of Laborers as employers.
The complaint states the “Defendants promised that they would contribute and pay to plaintiffs the hourly amounts required by the agreements for each hour paid for or worked by any of their employees who performed any work covered by said agreements,” which include paying interest for any delinquent fees and allowing the Board to conduct an audit to determine whether employers have contributed as required.
The Board claims they “cannot determine whether or not defendants have made prompt and correct payment of all fund contributions” and made written requests demanding Underground allow the Board to conduct an audit.
The complaint states that despite requests to conduct an audit, Underground has “failed, refused or neglected to allow the audit as requested or inspection of their books, records, papers, or reports in accordance with the provisions of the Trust Agreements.”
The Board is requesting a court order “permanently enjoining defendants for so long as they remain obligated to contribute to plaintiffs' trust funds, from failing, neglecting, or refusing to timely submit required monthly contributions reports and payments as required by the terms of the collective bargaining agreements, trust agreements and ERISA.”
The Board is seeking attorney’s fees and costs, damages, and an injunction against Underground Specialties Inc.
The Board of Trustees is represented by Barry E. Hinkle, Concepcion E. Lozano-Batista and Tracy L. Mainguy with Roger, Weinberg & Rosenfield in Alameda, California.
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California case number 3:18-cv-03700-EDL