Wage and Hour Division (WHD)
U.S. Department of Labor
NEW YORK -- The U.S. Department of Labor has secured a consent judgment ordering Panmark Ltd., doing business as Mythos Restaurant, and owners Peter Theodoropoulos and Paul Theodoropoulos, to pay a total of $329,000 in back wages and liquidated damages to 21 restaurant workers. The judgment resolves a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York charging the Flushing, Queens, restaurant and its owners with violations of the minimum wage, overtime and record-keeping requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act.
The legal action followed an investigation by the department’s Wage and Hour Division that found the defendants underpaid 21 low-wage restaurant employees between Aug. 23, 2008, and Aug. 20, 2011. Specifically, restaurant wait staff were not paid any wages and worked for tips only, while busboys and kitchen staff were paid a fixed shift rate, but not overtime, for hours worked above 40 in a workweek.
“The department is pleased that this employer has agreed to comply with the FLSA and will pay its employees the back wages and the liquidated damages to which they are entitled under the law. Unfortunately, the minimum wage, overtime pay and record-keeping violations that were found at this restaurant are all too common in the restaurant industry,” said Maria Rosado, the division’s district director for New York City. “All employers who are violating the FLSA should know that the department is committed to using all the tools at its disposal, including collection of liquidated damages and assessment of civil money penalties, to achieve compliance with the law. This employer’s failure to pay wages required by the FLSA negatively impacts the workers who work without pay, their families and their competitors, who pay lawful wages. ”
In addition to the back wages and liquidated damages, which will be paid to the workers, the defendants will pay a $7,100 civil money penalty. They will also post the FLSA notice, in English and Spanish, in the workplace to inform workers of their rights. Further, the judgment requires the defendants to pay proper minimum wage and overtime to workers and maintain adequate and accurate records. It restrains them from retaliating against any employee who files a complaint with, or cooperates in an investigation, by the Wage and Hour Division.
The FLSA requires that covered, nonexempt employees be paid at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, as well as time and one-half their regular rate for every hour they work beyond 40 per week. The law also requires employers to maintain accurate records of employees’ wages and hours and other conditions of employment. It prohibits employers from retaliating against employees who exercise their rights under the law.
The investigation was conducted by the division’s New York City District Office. The department’s Regional Office of the Solicitor in New York litigated the case for the division.
For more information about the FLSA, contact the division’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243) or its New York City District Office at 212-264-8185. Information also is available at http://www.dol.gov/whd.
U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at (202) 693-7828 or TTY (202) 693-7755. The Labor Department is committed to providing America’s employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit www.dol.gov/compliance.