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News Brief

Phoenix-area restaurants to pay more than $105K in overtime back wages and damages to 19 employees working at three locations

Employer: Grassroots Kitchen and Tap #1, LLC, Grassroots Kitchen and Tap #2, LLC and Twisted Grove #1, LLC

Sites: Grassroots Kitchen and Tap #1 (8120 N. Hayden, Scottsdale, Arizona 85258); Grassroots Kitchen and Tap #2 (2119 East Camelback Road, Phoenix, Arizona 85016); and Twisted Grove Parlor and Bar (8220 N. Hayden Road, Scottsdale, Arizona 85258)

Investigation findings: These restaurants, which share common ownership and operations and are joint employers, failed to combine the number of hours worked by employees who worked in multiple locations, and when their hours exceeded 40 in a work week, failed to pay overtime. The employees often worked more than 40 combined hours but were paid only straight-time for all those hours. The hours at each establishment were paid on separate checks and were not combined when determining when overtime was due.

Resolution: To resolve violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act, the restaurant company has agreed to pay $52,863 in back wages to 19 employees for overtime violations and an equal, additional amount of $52,863 in damages to the workers. The employer has also agreed to pay $5,984 in penalties.

Quote: "This case reflects a common violation found in an industry that employs large numbers of vulnerable workers," said Eric Murray, director of the Wage and Hour Division's district office in Phoenix. "Other employers paying in a similar manner should take note of this investigation. We strongly encourage workers who may be in similar situations, where their employer is not paying overtime after 40 hours of work in a workweek, to contact us with the knowledge that the information they share is kept confidential to the maximum extent of the law."

Information: Joint employers are responsible, both individually and jointly, for compliance with the FLSA. Under the FLSA, each of the joint employers must ensure that the employee receives all employment-related rights under the FLSA (including payment of at least the federal minimum wage for all hours worked and overtime pay at not less than one and one-half the regular rate of pay for hours worked over 40 in a workweek, unless an exception or exemption applies). Furthermore, joint employers must combine all of the hours worked by the employee in a workweek to determine if the employee worked more than 40 hours and is due overtime compensation.

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 rates 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. For more information about federal wage laws administered by the Wage and Hour Division, call the agency's toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Information also is available at

  • Read this news release in Spanish.

Wage and Hour Division
December 2, 2015
Release Number
Media Contact: Leo Kay
Phone Number
Media Contact: Jose Carnevali