HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- A former employee of Colortree, the Henrico-based direct mail, and printing company that announced its abrupt closure, has filed a class action lawsuit in federal court.
Terry Kennedy filed the class action complaint in U.S. District Court in Richmond on Thursday claiming Colortree violated the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN Act).
The company announced on Monday that it was closing down operations and, as a result, approximately 240 people were losing their jobs.
Kennedy worked at the company for three years until "he and others were suddenly told they were terminated" according to the lawsuit.
The defendant stated that Colortree employees "were not provided 60 days advance written notice of their terminations" as required by the WARN Act, which allows them to "seek to recover 60 days wages and benefits."
In a letter sent to the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) on June 3, the company said employees will be paid up until that date.
Employees that CBS 6 spoke with said Friday, June 7 would have been their normal payday but nothing had been deposited in their bank accounts.
"Nothing. And not only myself. I've heard from at least six other employees, 'No money.'," said the front office employee, who added they were concerned how many of their former co-workers could afford to miss a payday. "Did they have things at the bank that bounced? Did they have bills that couldn't get paid?"
In the letter sent to the VEC, the company did not give a reason for the closure, but one employee told CBS 6 that a reason was given during a meeting with staff on Monday when they were being told about the closure.
"They could not find any financial resources to continue on," said the front office employee.
A longtime contractor of Colortree provided CBS 6 with an email he said was sent to him by the company's accounting specialist on February 28, 2019.
The Colortree accounting specialist stated the contractor hadn't been paid since November 2018 calling him a "(very reliable!) one man operation and his balance is 93,326.12."
Another email sent to Colortree employees at 5:38 p.m. Friday stated "Colortree finalized agreements with its lender and confirmed payroll was funded this afternoon. Employees should expect their earnings will be in their bank accounts on Monday. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your patience."
Multiple attempts by email, phone, and site visits by CBS 6 to reach ColorTree management and ownership for comment have been unsuccessful.