AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Dozens of former Ruby Tequila's employees in Amarillo and Lubbock are still waiting for their paychecks from their now ex-employer.
Many are now seeking legal counsel on what they can do to get the pay they earned.
When the restaurants unexpectedly closed two weeks ago, it left dozens of people jobless in an instant - and without income.
"For the three weeks that he hadn't been paid it's over $2,000," said Mollie Brown, who's husband was a cook at both Amarillo locations.
Many people, like Brown's husband, held off on getting new jobs because they were told the restaurants would open again in a few days.
Now, looking for help, about 50 people met at the Pipefitters Union Hall Monday evening trying to piece together what happened to their jobs, and what they can do to take legal action to try to make things right.
"I can't imagine a single person here tonight who didn't need their paycheck," said Attorney Jeff Blackburn, who hosted Monday's meeting. "What we're hearing are stories of people who've already lost their apartments, who have been evicted, who have lost their cars because they couldn't make a payment."
Brown's family is at risk of losing those things.
"We have seven children, five of which are school age children," she said. "We have had to since apply for government assistance. How are we supposed to get these kids in school? How are we supposed to get school supplies for them? He's our only income."
Other victims said they've not been able to file for unemployment because they technically were never fired.
Brown and almost everyone else at the meeting all signed on to be part of a class action lawsuit Blackburn will file on their behalf
"This is not just wrong and it's not just illegal. It is a crime," said Blackburn. "The people that have done this to them are criminals, and they need to be stopped."
"Whatever we have to do to get it done we're going to do it," said Brown.
Blackburn said he plans to file this lawsuit before the end of summer.
He and the victims of the closing want to make sure no one else is hurt by this business in the future.