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NY Pizzerias Found in Violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act

April 23, 2011

In a recent Temecula, California employment lawyers blog, our attorneys discussed the federal government's continuing investigations on restaurant employers in low wage industries, who deny their employees their legal right to fair payment under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), leading to wage and hour violations.

Our Riverside employment attorneys have been frequently discussing a growing number of wage and hour lawsuits, and in yet another case, three pizzerias in Long Island, NY, doing business as Gino's Pizza Pasta Restaurant will pay $181,544 to 61 employees, for overtime back wages, after a DOL investigation found the restaurants to have violated the FLSA. The pizzerias are also required to pay the government $22,002 in civil money penalties for willfully violating federal employment laws.

According to the DOL Wage and Hour Division's Long Island District Office director, this case typifies many violations found in the restaurant industry that affect vulnerable workers, many of whom do not speak English as their first language, and may not be aware of their federal labor and employment rights.

The investigation reportedly found that the restaurants had violated the FLSA by paying low-wage workers straight time wages for every hour worked, instead of overtime, which is one and one-half their regular pay rates for all hours worked past 40 in a workweek. The employers were also reportedly using a system that violated the FLSA's record-keeping provisions, by falsifying time cards to claim that the workers were being paid fair and accurate wages. The employees were reportedly never paid for the overtime compensation recorded on the timecards, and were instead paid in cash for overtime hours. Under the FLSA, employers who violate the federal employment law provisions are responsible for paying their workers the full amount of unpaid wages, along with an equal amount in liquidated damages.

If you have experienced violations of the FLSA or California Labor Codes, contact our Orange County employment attorneys at Howard Law, PC today for a free consultation to discuss your labor and employment rights.

3 Long Island pizzerias to pay more than $181,000 in back wages to 61 employees following US Labor Department investigations, The U.S. Department of Labor Press Release, April 21, 2011

Related Web Resources:

U.S. Department of Labor: Wage and Hour Division (WHD), Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)

Related Blog Posts:

Another NYC Restaurant Sued by DOL For Wage and Hour Violations, California Employment Lawyers Blog, January 7, 2011

New York City Restaurant Ordered to Pay Employees $436K in Back Wages, California Employment Lawyers Blog, December 24, 2010

DOL Wage and Hour Division Audits for Low Wage Industry Violations, California Employment Lawyers Blog, July 20, 2010