Truckers Sue Over Alleged Lease-Purchase Swindle

Employee Charged With Stealing Over $1 Million From Trucking Company

Five truckers have brought a lawsuit against a Texas-based trucking company, alleging that they were cheated out of pay, overcharged for expenses, and duped by the lease-purchase program.

Truckers: TIGA Misrepresented Freight Revenues Used To Calculate Pay-Outs

The truckers hope to bring a class-action status suit against¬†TIGA Logistics for substantially underpaying drivers by “misrepresenting the freight revenues used to calculate pay-outs.” The drivers say that TIGA was supposed to pay them 70 to 75% of freight revenue that it collected from customers, but the company then misrepresented the amount that they charge customers. Further, the lawsuit says that the company refused to let drivers examine rate sheets so that the drivers were unable to determine how much customers were being charged.

Lawsuit Says Company Padded Charges Deducted From Pay-Outs

The drivers also allege that TIGA improperly added expenses and fees so that they could pad deductions from their payouts. For example, they were charged a 10% fee on non-fuel purchases and a 2% surcharge on fuel purchases charged to a company card.

Lease-Purchase Program Called Into Question

The lawsuit further alleges that TIGA uses duplicitous practices in its lease-purchase program. The drivers say that the company maintained escrow accounts holding money paid by drivers for maintenance costs. The suit claims that if the funds in the escrow accounts grow large enough, the company would terminate its contract with the driver, demand the return of leased equipment, and then kept the money in the escrow account.

If courts approve a class action status for the suit, it could impact as many as 200 truck drivers.

The drivers are seeking actual and punitive damages, as well as a return of escrow funds and any profit that was made off of those funds.

TIGA is a Woodlands, Texas, based trucking company that hauls crude oil in Oklahoma and New Mexico.

Sources:
The Houston Chronicle
San Antonio Express-News