Former Interns Suing Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen Twins for Exploiting Free Labor


A former intern working for Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen’s Dualstar Entertainment Group has filed a class-action lawsuit with dozens of other interns, who accuse the company of abusing them by taking advantage of loopholes in minimum wage requirements.

Shasta Lalani, who says in a suit filed this week in Manhattan’s state Supreme Court she worked 50-hour weeks for the former “Full House” child stars from May to September 2012, claims despite the Olsens being worth an estimated $300 million, their company doesn’t take care of those who are doing the heavy lifting.

Lalani, who graduated from the Parsons School of Design in 2013, says she worked in Manhattan as a design intern for the Olsens’ fashion label, The Row.

She told Page Six Tuesday, “I was doing the work of three interns. I was talking to her all day, all night. E-mails at nighttime for the next day, like 10 p.m. at night.”

The former intern also says she was hospitalized for dehydration because of the job’s demands, telling the site, “It was like 100 degrees outside. I’d just be sweating to death. I probably carried like 50 pounds worth of trench coats.”

In addition to being forced to perform a series of never-ending and menial tasks, like organizing buttons by color code and cleaning, Lalani alleges interns are not permitted to take breaks.

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

The woman also says she did meet the Olsens on more than one occasion, and describes them as “really nice people.”

“They were never mean to anyone,” she said. “They’re business people.”

The company has not yet commented on the lawsuit.


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