Wage and Hour Division (WHD)
U.S. Department of Labor
US Department of Labor sues chain of New York City dollar stores and owners to recover minimum wage and overtime back wages for employees
NEW YORK -- The U.S. Department of Labor has sued an enterprise of dollar stores with locations throughout New York City, and five owners of the various corporations, for alleged violations of the minimum wage, overtime and recordkeeping provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
An investigation by the department’s Wage and Hour Division found that approximately 92 employees working at the companies’ retail stores often were paid at hourly rates less than the federal minimum wage, and were required to work more than 40 hours in many weeks without being properly compensated. The investigation also found that the companies failed to maintain adequate and accurate records of their employees, wages, hours and other conditions of employment.
The FLSA requires that covered employees be paid at least the applicable minimum wage as well as one and one-half times their regular rates of pay for hours worked over 40 per week. The law also requires that accurate records of employees’ wages, hours and other conditions of employment be maintained.
Named as defendants in the department’s lawsuit are the following related companies: U.S. Dream Inc. of Iselin, N.J.; Dollar Program LLC doing business as 99 Cent Dreams of New York, N.Y.; Dollar Super Inc. doing business as 99 Cent Dream of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Dollar One Inc. doing business as Dollar One of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Dollar Pack Inc. doing business as Dollar Pack of Bronx, N.Y.; Dollar Motion Inc. doing business as Dollar Motion of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Pitkin Dollar Store Inc. doing business as Dollar Xpress of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Dollar Does It Inc. doing business as Dollar Does It of Bronx, N.Y.; Dollar Moon Inc. doing business as Dollar Moon of New York, N.Y.; Dollar Budget Inc. doing business as 99 Cent Dreams of Queens Village, N.Y., and Dollar Street Inc. doing business as 99 Cent Dream of Jamaica, N.Y.
The following owners of the above-named corporations also are named as defendants: Mohammed M. Abbasi, Mohammad S. Andha, Mohammed Memon, Basit H. Motiwala and Muhammad Irfan.
“We have taken this legal action,” said Philip Jacobson, director of the Wage and Hour Division’s district office in New York City, “because, in the past, these defendants have professed to operate single establishments even though they are actually operating a large, multi-establishment retail enterprise with many locations, and have been failing to properly pay employees even after investigations of individual establishments put them on notice of the law’s requirements. In this case, we are seeking a large amount of minimum wage and overtime back wages we found due these workers, plus interest and an equal amount in damages, due to the size of the enterprise and the results of prior investigations.”
The department is asking current and former employees of the dollar stores to assist in this case by contacting the Brooklyn Area Office of the Wage and Hour Division at 718-254-9410 to help determine the full extent of the violations.
The Labor Department’s suit, filed with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, charges the defendants with willful and repeat violations of the minimum wage, overtime and recordkeeping provisions of the FLSA since June 24, 2006. The suit asks the court to permanently enjoin the defendants from future violations of the law and to order them to pay employees back wages due, along with an equal amount in liquidated damages or prejudgment interest.
The New York District Office of the Wage and Hour Division conducted this investigation, and the department’s suit was filed by its Regional Solicitor’s Office, also in New York City. For more information about the provisions of the FLSA, call the division’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243) or visithttp://www.dol.gov/whd.
Solis v. U.S. Dream Inc. et al; Civil Action Number: 1:09-CV-04485
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