Labor advocates in Minnesota and around the country might be monitoring developments relating to a series of complaints against McDonald's franchises being considered by the National Labor Relations Board. The board ruled on July 29 that the fast food company could be named as a joint employer in the complaints. McDonald's has long held that their restaurant franchises are independently run businesses. They say that the parent company should not be involved in disputes relating to such matters as wage and overtime laws.
A McDonald's representative said that the company would contest the ruling, but labor leaders say that the company has a great deal of influence over how its franchises are run. An example of this came to light in March 2014 after fast food workers in three states filed lawsuits. McDonald's software used to monitor labor costs was shown to prevent workers from clocking in if labor cost to sales percentage ratios were too high.