Former Employees Accuse Burger King and Gurtler Chemicals of BIPA Violations

Biometrics News - Former Employees Accuse Burger King and Gurtler Chemicals of BIPA Violations

Two more companies are being taken to court for alleged violations of the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). The Cook County Record reports that David Kirby and Araceli Refugio Huerta have respectively filed class action complaints against Gurtler Chemicals and Burger King for requiring employees to scan their biometric information when clocking in for work.

The lawsuits are nearly identical aside from the modality in question. Kirby alleges that Gurtler required a full hand scan, while Huerta alleges that Burger King used fingerprint authentication. Both insist that their employer did not provide sufficient notification about the BIPA law or obtain sufficient consent when gathering biometric information.

Though they are working with different law firms, both plaintiffs are seeking anywhere between $1,000 and $5,000 per violation, in addition to legal fees and other expenses. Neither is currently employed by their respective defendant.  

The two lawsuits demonstrate that BIPA’s reach goes well beyond the ongoing lawsuit against Facebook. That particular lawsuit has generated most of the headlines, but every company in Illinois is subject to the same regulations, whether they’re gathering biometric information about private employees or consumers in the general public.

The Gurtler and Burger King actions are similar to an earlier lawsuit filed against Scrub, Inc. Illinois law firms have started looking for biometrics specialists in anticipation of a growing number of BIPA lawsuits, a decision that would seem to get some validation from these latest legal actions.

Sources: Cook County Record, Cook County Record

August 29, 2019 – by Eric Weiss