“Every New Yorker deserves fair pay and compensation for their hard work,” said Attorney General James. “Instead of building up our communities, the owners of Build With Prospect exploited workers and unlawfully withheld their hard-earned wages. My office is committed to ensuring everyone receives the wages they are owed, and we will continue to go after employers who prey on hardworking people.”
Brooklyn-based Build With Prospect claimed to operate as a “worker cooperative,” but forced workers to become shareholders of the company by making their employment conditional on owning shares. Workers were required to sign a shareholder agreement and pay $12,000 total for their alleged shares in the company, but they had very little control over the company as shareholders and did not receive any benefits of ownership.