CHICAGO — A subsidiary of the national payday lender Check Into Cash Inc. in Illinois has settled charges by the state Attorney General's Office of forcing low-wage customer service employees into unlawful restrictive non-compete agreements.
According to the Attorney General's Office, Check Into Cash of Illinois required employees at 33 locations throughout the state to sign non-compete agreements that stopped employees who left the company from working at other lending services businesses for one year. The agreements, which included those making under $13 an hour, contained such a "wide variety of businesses" who "extend credit" such as retail stores and auto dealerships that it limited employees from taking higher paying jobs, the Attorney General's Office said.
“My settlement with Check Into Cash ends the company’s inappropriate practice of limiting low-wage workers employment options by requiring them to sign unfair non-compete agreements,” Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan said in a statement. “Low-income workers should be free to use their experience to get better, higher-paying jobs.”
The settlement includes Check Into Cash paying $75,000 and doing away with its non-compete agreement for "store-level" employees. Check Into Cash will also train managers and other employees on the agreement changes, according to Attorney General's Office.