Please note: As of January 20, 2017, information in some news releases may be out of date or not reflect current policies.

News Brief

Car wash in Orange County to pay more than $68K in back wages and damages to 16 workers following US Labor Department investigation

Employer: Humanage Acquisitions LLC, doing business as Riverbend Hand Car Wash

Site: 22290 La Palma Avenue, Yorba Linda, California 92887

Investigation findings: Investigators from the department’s Wage and Hour Division found that Riverbend Hand Car Wash failed to pay for all the hours employees worked, and failed to pay legally-required overtime when they worked beyond 40 hours in a work week, in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act. The company required employees to arrive at the car wash at a certain time in the morning but did not allow them to clock in until a manager called them to clean and detail cars. This unpaid waiting time was not recorded or paid for and resulted in an overtime violation when employees worked more than forty hours in a week.  Even when recorded hours did exceed 40, the employer paid only straight time. Some employees were paid by check for the hours worked during the week and in cash for hours worked during weekends, all at straight time rates.  The car wash was also found in violation of FLSA’s recordkeeping requirements.

Resolution: The car wash agreed to comply with the FLSA and will pay $34,329 in overtime back wages plus an equal additional amount in liquidated damages, totaling $68,658 to 16 workers.

Quote: “Workers in this industry are among the most vulnerable that we see,” said Rodolfo Cortez, director of the Wage and Hour Division’s district office in San Diego. “Denying these workers their hard-earned wages can make it difficult for them to care for themselves and their families. This case should serve as an example to other employers who may be shorting their workers, and demonstrates our commitment to ensuring that workers are paid what they have legally earned.  Other employees who are being paid this way should give us a call.”

Information: 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. In general, “hours worked” includes all time an employee must be on duty, or on the employer’s premises or at any other prescribed place of work, from the beginning of the first principal work activity to the end of the last principal activity of the workday. 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 http://www.dol.gov/whd.

Agency
Wage and Hour Division
Date
January 19, 2016
Release Number
15-2321-SAN
Contact: Leo Kay
Phone Number
Contact: Jose Carnevali