Kandi Burruss was shocked when she saw an Instagram post from her former employee, where he talked about loyalty. The employee’s name is Johnnie Winston, and he hinted that he had been betrayed by Kandi and her team, as he had been fired without any warning. Kandi revealed on The Real Housewives of Atlanta that he was dropping the ball on the work she had hired him for because he was running his own side-business on top of the work he was doing for Burruss. So when they got into a heated argument, Johnnie went straight to Phaedra Parks in hopes they could file a lawsuit against Kandi.
According to a new Radar Online report, Kandi Burruss is now learning that Winston did indeed file a lawsuit against her, but it wasn’t launched by Phaedra. He claimed that Kandi had made him work without giving him pay for the hours he worked for her, had fired him without reason, and had fired him to avoid giving him any financial credit for the restaurant. Apparently, he claims that he and Kandi had a verbal agreement about her restaurant and now wants money from her.
— The Real Housewives (@RHOPolls) January 13, 2017
According to documents filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, Johnnie is suing Kandi Burruss for “failure to pay overtime and minimum wage in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938.”
During their argument filmed for The Real Housewives of Atlanta, Winston told Kandi Burruss that she owed him money for work he had done, but Kandi reveals that she only paid him what he agreed to get paid for the work he had done. In the court papers, he’s going after Kandi and her company for more compensation, including payment for the time he had spent in the recording studio, planning events, running errands, preparing meals for events, performing handyman and housekeeping duties, attending meetings, and more.
Winston also claims that he was forced to work up to seven days a week and, sometimes, 10 to 12 hours per day, even though Kandi Burruss only paid him for five days, according to Radar Online.
“Beginning in August 2013 and continuing through his termination on February 29, 2016, Defendants failed to pay Mr. Winston any overtime pay for performing his duties as required by the FLSA,” the filing reads, adding, “Defendants failed to pay Mr. Winston the required minimum wage for performing his duties as required by the FLSA.”
After the lawsuit was filed, Kandi Burruss decided to use a lawyer to respond to the lawsuit, claiming that she’s not responsible for the claims and she never violated the Fair Labor Standards Act. This is the only thing Kandi has said about the lawsuit, as she hasn’t dished out any details on social media.
— All About The Tea (@AllAboutTheTea_) January 9, 2017
“Defendants did not willfully violate the Fair Labor Standards Act because any acts or omissions giving rise to this action were reasonable, undertaken in good faith, and were not undertaken with reckless disregard as to whether such actions or omissions violated the FLSA,” the response reads, adding, “Defendants cannot be liable for liquidated damages.”
Burruss quickly pointed out on her Bravo blog recently that she couldn’t talk about the drama because there was a pending lawsuit, but she should win this lawsuit if she didn’t violate the Fair Labor Standards Act. And maybe Phaedra knew she couldn’t win the case, as she passed on the offer.
What do you think of Kandi Burruss’ decision to file a response to the lawsuit? Are you surprised that Johnnie is indeed suing Burruss for the money she paid him over three years?
[Featured Image by Moses Robinson/Getty Images]