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Class Claims Ford Dealer Skims Wages

PHOENIX (CN) - A Ford dealership deducts $62.50 a month from its workers' paychecks for "use of [the dealership's] software," and its employees say that Berge Ford told them they had to submit to it "or get fired." The workers' class action claims the deduction is illegal and they never agreed to it.

The six named plaintiffs sued Berge Ford in Maricopa County Court.

They say they never signed an agreement that the money could be deducted from their wages, but the Ford dealer told them to "do it or get fired," their attorney Harry Friedlander said in an interview.

Berge Ford, of Mesa, has a computer program that helps employees keep track of prospective clients, Friedlander says.

"They made it available to everyone and started to take the deductions out," the attorney said.

The class may include more than 50 employees or former employees, Friedlander said. The complaint claims the deductions violate A.R.S. § 23-352.

The workers originally filed the complaint pro se at the Highland Regional Justice Court, but Friedlander dismissed it and refiled in county court.

The class seeks treble damages for violations of state employment law, and attorney's fees.

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