Court Awards Over $200K to Security Guards in Employment Misclassification Lawsuit Resolution
June 14, 2011
Employee Misclassification continues to be a nationwide employment problem, as our attorneys have discussed in a related Carson, California employment lawyers blog, where employers often misclassify workers as independent contractors instead of employees, making them "exempt" from overtime laws. Many employers across the country misclassify employees by mistake, while other employers take advantage of employee misclassification to avoid paying minimum wage, social security, overtime, and other important employee benefits.
In a recent employee misclassification lawsuit development, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has secured a federal court summary judgment requiring International Detective & Protective Services (IDPS) to pay 57 private security guards over $200,000 in liquidated damages and back pay for violating Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) provisions related to overtime and record-keeping.
According to the DOL investigation, the security company classified private security guards as independent contractors and failed to compensate the workers one and one-half their hourly pay rates for any hours worked beyond forty in a workweek, as required by FLSA law for covered employees. Judge Kendall concluded that IDPS attempted to misclassify the security guards by providing them with an Independent Contractor agreement to sign, in order to avoid the responsibility of paying the workers in accordance to the FLSA's overtime requirements--making the company responsible for overtime compensation that was unpaid.
Judge Kendall also found that as the company has shown no compliance in the past with FLSA regulations, even after the DOL gave prior warnings about the company's improper classification of the security guards, the court has ordered a permanent injunction stopping IDPS from future federal wage and hour violations.
In Long Beach, South Gate and Westminster, California, contact our labor and employment attorneys at Howard Law, PC today, for a free consultation about your wage and hour rights.
Court awards US Department of Labor more than $200,000 in back wages, damages for Chicago area private security guards, U.S. Department of Labor Press Release, June 6, 2011
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