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State Attorney General announces agreement to protect Haggen’s workers

Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson on Tuesday (Sept. 29) announced an agreement with the owner of the Haggen grocery store chain that ensures laid-off workers will receive their pay on time.

This includes workers at one of two Haggens in Burien – the one located on 1st Ave South at 128th – which is slated to close sometime in November (read our previous coverage here [1]).

The company, Haggen Holdings, LLC, is currently in bankruptcy proceedings in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware.  As part of those proceedings, the company filed a motion seeking relief from “Fast Pay” laws in the states in which it plans to close stores.

“Bankruptcy is a challenging process for any company and its stakeholders,” Ferguson said.  “It is my priority to see that workers are paid fairly and timely for their labor.  This agreement with Haggen’s will ensure that Washington workers who are already facing the upheaval and uncertainty of store closings and layoffs will receive their checks on the next scheduled payday.”

It is not unusual for a company in bankruptcy to seek flexibility from the courts in meeting obligations arising under state law and contractual agreements.  When the Attorney General’s Office reached out to Haggen’s lawyers, the company voluntarily agreed to abide by RCW 49.48.010 [2], which requires employers to pay laid-off workers at the end of the pay period.

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