Writers on E!’s “Fashion Police” have complained to the state of California, alleging that the network is breaking state law by not compensating them for regular wages and overtime — an assertion denied by the network.
The Writers Guild of America West, which provided the writers with legal assistance, made the announcement Wednesday and alleged that the claims filed with the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement could result in the cable TV network having to pay more than $1 million in back wages.
Reps for the network, which is owned by NBCUniversal, said, “E! values our Fashion Police writers and we pay them fairly and in full legal compliance.”
“Fashion Police” began airing in 2010.
The WGA said “Fashion Police” is ignoring California laws that require an employer to pay hourly employees their regular wage rate for all time worked in an eight-hour period along with paying overtime for working beyond eight hours in any workday or more than 40 hours in any workweek.
Eight writers filed claims, according to the guild.
“The most I’ve been paid for a show has been for eight hours of work,” said “Fashion Police” said Eliza Skinner, who filed one of the claims. “In reality, I put in anywhere from 12 to 32 additional hours on each show – time I should have been compensated for. On top of that is all the unpaid overtime we regularly work. There are some shows where we are required to work 16-hour days, from 2:30 p.m. until around 5:30 the following morning.”