The United States Department of Labor announced that it recoverd $80k from a temporary staffing agency that had misclassified some employees as independent contractors
Employer: Always Reliable Management Services Inc.
Investigation site: 1815 W. 15th St.
Panama City, FL 32401
Investigation findings: U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators found Always Reliable Management Services Inc. – a temporary staffing agency that provides housekeeping, front desk and maintenance workers to Panama City-area hotels – misclassified some employees as independent contractors. As a result, the employer paid the workers straight-time rates for all hours worked, failing to pay the additional half-time rate for hours over 40 in a workweek, a Fair Labor Standards Act violation.
Back Wages Recovered and Liquidated Damages: $80,268 in back wages and liquidated damages for 108 workers.
Quote: “Misclassification of employees as independent contractors unlawfully limits employees’ earning potential, denies them payment of benefits and payroll withholding for taxes, and makes it harder for them to provide for themselves and their families. Employers must ensure they pay their workers their rightfully earned wages under the law,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Wildalí De Jesús in Orlando, Florida. “In an industry suffering from a nearly 7 percent monthly quit rate, employers who pay workers less that they have earned can quickly find themselves struggling to maintain the workforce needed to stay in business.”
Background: Employers can contact the Wage and Hour Division at its toll-free number, 1-866-4-US-WAGE. The division also offers numerous online resources for employers, such as a fact sheet on Fair Labor Standards Act wage laws overtime requirements. Workers who feel they may not be getting the wages they earned may contact a Wage and Hour Division representative in their state through a list and interactive online map on the agency’s website. Workers and employers alike can help ensure hours worked and pay are accurate by downloading the department’s Android Timesheet App for free.
As of June 2022, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the leisure and hospitality industry had an 8.5 percent job opening rate with more than 1,451,000 job openings nationwide and a 6.8 percent quit rate.