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Lady Gaga’s former personal assistant is not exactly going gaga over her erstwhile boss these days.
In fact, Jennifer L. O’Neill is suing her former boss, claiming the flamboyant pop singer owes her more than $379,000 in overtime pay.
In a lawsuit filed last month in federal district court in New York, Ms. O’Neill says she worked for Lady Gaga in early 2009 and also from about February 2010 through her termination in March 2011. She said she attended to her needs at home as well as during her travels for her global tours “from city to city throughout the world, at locales including stadiums, private jets, fine hotel suites, yachts, ferries, trains and tour buses. Plaintiff was always behind the scenes and figuratively, if not literally, always at her side,” says the lawsuit.
Ms. O’Neill said her duties included confirming Lady Gaga’s schedule, reviewing and reconciling her credit card statements, ordering meals and ensuring they were correctly prepared and served at specific times, ensuring the availability of chosen outfits “and the promptness of a towel following a shower” and “serving as a personal alarm clock” to keep the singer on schedule.
Ms. O’Neill said her annual salary was $75,000, but she was not paid overtime for working more than 40 hours a week. She said she was on duty 24 hours a day, “from the earliest working hour, for being responsive to the slightest need throughout the day, and for addressing spontaneous random matters in the middle of the tonight.”
Ms. O’Neill is suing Lady Gaga under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and New York state labor law. In addition to the more than $379,000 in overtime, she is seeking an equal amount “in the form of liquidated damages” as well as reasonable attorneys’ fees, costs and prejudgment interest.