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Labor Department sues Magic Touch Cleaning, Inc. for back wages and damages due to underpaid janitorial workers
Date of Action: March 11, 2015
Type of Action: Complaint
Names of Defendants: MAGIC TOUCH CLEANING, INC. and GARY WALKER, individually.
Allegations: An investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division found Magic Touch Cleaning Inc., a janitorial services company in Lee's Summit, Missouri, violated the Fair Labor Standards Act.
The company and its owner, Gary Walker, allegedly failed to pay at least 47 employees for all hours worked, allowed employees to be paid by checks written to co-workers and expected employees to share their pay with co-workers. These practices resulted in minimum wage violations. Magic Touch also failed to pay overtime at the required time and one-half for hours worked over 40 in a workweek.
"No worker should ever be asked to accept a payroll check written to another person, or share their rightfully earned wages, clear violations of the law," said Patricia Preston, district director for the Wage and Hour Division in Kansas City. "Recovery of these wages will make a real difference in the lives of these employees, who work long hours and in this case, weren't always compensated at minimum wage. This lawsuit demonstrates the Department's commitment to ensuring that employers live up to their responsibility to pay every worker in accordance with the law."
Resolution: The suit seeks back wages and an equal amount as liquidated damages for the workers affected. It also asks for an injunction against Magic Touch and Walker for future violations of the FLSA.
The FLSA requires that covered, nonexempt employees be paid at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour for all hours worked, plus time and one-half their regular hourly rates for hours worked beyond 40 per week. The FLSA provides that employers who violate the law are, as a general rule, liable to employees for their back wages and an equal amount in liquidated damages. Liquidated damages are paid directly to the affected employees. Additionally, the law requires employers to maintain accurate time and payroll records and prohibits retaliation against employees who exercise their rights under the law.
For more information about the FLSA, visit https://www.dol.gov/whd or call the division's toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243).
Court: United States District Court, Western District of Missouri
Docket Number: Perez v. Magic Touch, et. al 15-cv-174