Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen's company sued by former interns who claim they worked 50-hour weeks without pay at luxury fashion label

“Other interns have cried,” a former design intern alleges in court papers

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The Independent Online

The Olsen Twins Mary-Kate and Ashley have successfully gone from child stars to fashion designers, but their company Duelstar Entertainment Group is reportedly being sued by 40 current and former interns who claim they worked 50-hour weeks without being paid.

The class-action lawsuit has reportedly been filed claiming appropriate compensation for the interns, arguing that they were all performing the same tasks as paid employees and were therefore wrongly classified as exempt from minimum wage requirements.

The lead plaintiff in the case, Shahista Lalani, was a design intern for the twins’ luxury clothing brand The Row for five months, although she never worked directly for the Olsens.

In court documents obtained by Page Six, Lalani claims she was treated poorly, alleging she was made to do menial tasks including organising buttons by colour and getting coffee for paid members of staff, while also being expected to do full time duties including pattern cutting, data entry, sewing, making tech sheets, organising materials and photocopying.

Lalani also claims she was hospitalised for dehydration due to the long hours, which often involved working until 10pm.

"You’re cleaning. You don’t get a set 15-minute break. You just go with their crazy flow. You just [got] caught up in the pressure,” Lalani said, adding that her boss, the head of design, was ‘very demanding’.

Read more: There was almost a world without Mary-Kate and Ashley

“You’re like an employee, except you’re not getting paid. They’re kind of mean to you. Other interns have cried. I’d see a lot of kids crying doing coffee runs, photocopying stuff.”

Lalani never worked directly for the Olsens, but said she had seen them at events and meetings and found them to bereally nice people.

“They were never mean to anyone,” she said.

A representative for the Olsen twins did not respond to requests for comment. A spokesperson for their company said “Dualstar is not aware of this” when asked about the lawsuit.

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