Wage and Hour Division (WHD)
U.S. Department of Labor
US Labor Department recovers more than $93,000 in back wages, damages and interest for 14 employees of Long Island, NY, catering company
NEW YORK -- Sterling Caterers & Restaurant LLC, located at 345 Hicksville Road, Bethpage, N.Y., and two principals of the company have agreed to pay 14 employees a total of $93,110 in back wages, damages and interest to resolve a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Labor alleging that they violated the Fair Labor Standards Act.
“When employees are deprived of their rightful wages, employers should know that the Labor Department will not hesitate to take legal action if necessary to recover those back wages, as well as liquidated damages and interest when appropriate,” said Irv Miljoner, director for the Labor Department’s Wage and Hour Division district office on Long Island.
The Labor Department’s suit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York following an investigation by the Wage and Hour Division that disclosed violations of the FLSA’s minimum wage, overtime pay and recordkeeping requirements. Named as defendants were Sterling Caterers & Restaurant; Parkash Lal Raj, individually and as president of the company; and Kashi Suchdeve, individually and as employer.
The FLSA requires that covered employees be paid at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour as well as time and one-half their regular hourly rates of pay for every hour they work beyond 40 per week. The law also requires employers to maintain accurate records of employees’ wages, hours and other conditions of employment, and prohibits employers from retaliating against employees who exercise their rights under the law.
The department’s suit charged the defendants with violating the FLSA and covers the period from Sept. 25, 2005, through Dec. 31, 2007. A consent judgment, entered by the court, orders the defendants to pay 14 employees $61,667 in back wages, $30,833 in liquidated damages and $610 in post-judgment interest for a grand total of $93,110. The court order prohibits the defendants from future violations of the FLSA’s minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping and anti-retaliation requirements.
Finally, the defendants have been ordered to implement an FLSA compliance program, which requires them to periodically consult with their attorney to make sure their business is running in accordance with the law; advise all employees of their worker rights and place posters in everyone’s plain view informing them of those rights in English and Spanish; and make efforts to keep informed about any changes to the FLSA.
For more information about the FLSA, call the Wage and Hour Division’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243) or contact the division’s Long Island office at 516-338-1890. Information is also available on the Internet at http://www.dol.gov/whd.
Solis v. Sterling Caterers & Restaurant LLC, et al Civil Action Number: 08-CV-3984 (SJF) (WDW)
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