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News Brief

Grand Rapids restaurant, owners agree with court order to comply with federal record-keeping rules after department’s Wage and Hour investigation

Type of Action: Fair Labor Standards Act consent judgment

Names of Defendants: Tian Li Restaurant Inc., doing business as Ming Ten Restaurant
Jin Ling Ren
Shi Ju Xing

Complaint: Under terms of a consent judgment, Tian Li Restaurant Inc., operating as Ming Ten Restaurant in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and its owners and managers, Jin Ling Ren and Shi Ju Xing, have agreed to comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act’s recordkeeping requirements.

An investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division determined since its incorporation in January 2014 Ming Ten Restaurant, and its owners and managers failed to keep legally required records of:

  • The number of hours worked daily and weekly by all employees.
  • Total daily and weekly earnings of all employees.
  • Employee information including full names, addresses, occupation and shifts worked, dates of hire and hourly rates or salaries.

Resolution: The consent judgment, entered with the U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan, Southern Division, enjoins the defendants from violating FLSA recordkeeping provisions and requires the employer to:

  • Provide employees with a pay stub each pay date that includes total hours worked and paid, and total earnings at their regular rate, overtime rate, gross amounts paid, tips received, and if applicable, any deductions taken.
  • Display in a place visible to employees both the Federal FLSA poster  (in English, Spanish and Mandarin) and the State of Michigan General Requirements Minimum Wage and Overtime Poster.

Under terms of a separate agreement, the company will also pay a total of $45,423 in unpaid overtime and minimum wages to 12 employees who worked as servers, buffet attendants and kitchen staff following the Wage and Hour investigation.

Quote: “Too often, restaurant workers do not receive the pay they have rightfully earned because the employer’s records do not accurately reflect the hours they have worked,” said Mary O’Rourke, district director for the Wage and Hour Division in Grand Rapids. “Some employers intentionally fail to keep records as a part of their efforts to avoid paying the wages they are legally responsible for paying. This judgment illustrates how seriously the Wage and Hour Division takes this issue – we will continue to use every tool available to us, including litigation, to ensure that employers hold up their end of the bargain and record and pay for every hour an employee works.”

Information: The FLSA requires that employers pay covered, nonexempt employees 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. 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 and other federal wage laws, call the Wage and Hour Division’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Information also is available at www.dol.gov/whd/fmla.

Court: U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan

Docket Number: 1:16-cv-432

Agency
Wage and Hour Division
Date
May 31, 2016
Release Number
16-0891-CHI
Contact: Scott Allen
Phone Number
Contact: Rhonda Burke
Phone Number