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'Fashion Police' target of WGA West complaint

April 10, 2013|By Richard Verrier
  • Comedian Joan Rivers, left, and her daughter Melissa Rivers in New York. Joan leads a panel on "Fashion Police," with Giuliana Rancic, Kelly Osbourne and stylist George Kotsiopoulos as they critique celebrity style choices.
Comedian Joan Rivers, left, and her daughter Melissa Rivers in New York.… (Dan Hallman / Invision/AP )

"Fashion Police" is once again under the spotlight of the Writers Guild of America, West.

The guild alleged Wednesday that Joan Rivers' production company, Rugby Productions, has violated California labor law by refusing to pay wages to writers on "Fashion Police."

Writers on the E! Network cable show, in which Rivers and other hosts comment on the fashion of celebrities, on Wednesday filed complaints with the state Division of Labor Standards Enforcement, alleging they are owed more than $400,000 in back wages.

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The complaint follows a similar complaint writers on the show filed last week against E!, contending the cable network owed them $1.1 million in back wages.

“Throughout our history, prominent members of the Guild have stood up for their fellow writers to ensure they are treated fairly and compensated properly,” WGAW President Chris Keyser said in a statement. “Unfortunately, this has not been the case with Ms. Rivers.”      

The writers are claiming that "Fashion Police" violated California laws that require an employer to pay hourly employees their regular wage rate for all time worked in an eight-hour period, the guild said. The law also requires the payment of overtime for work in excess of eight hours in any workday or 40 hours in any workweek.

"We have not seen any claims filed by anyone against Rugby Productions so we really don’t have a comment,'' said Larry Thompson, manager for Rivers.

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