U.S. Department of Labor Investigation Results in New Jersey Gas Station Owner Paying $132,735 in Back Wages
WEST ORANGE, NJ – After an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division (WHD), Elias and Katia LLC – owner of a West Orange, New Jersey, Exxon gas station – has paid $132,735 in back wages to 13 attendants to resolve violations of the minimum wage, overtime, and recordkeeping provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
WHD investigators found that Elias and Katia LLC violated the FLSA by failing to pay attendants at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, and to pay employees overtime when they worked more than 40 hours in a week. They also found the employer failed to maintain accurate time and payroll records, as required by law. Specifically, the employer paid wages to some employees that amounted to only $7.00 per hour, and paid straight-time rates regardless of the number of hours employees worked which, in some cases, topped 80 hours per week.
"Employees depend on receiving the wages they have rightfully earned, and law-abiding employers deserve to compete on a level playing field," said John Warner, Northern New Jersey Wage and Hour Division District Office Director. "The U.S. Department of Labor will continue to monitor New Jersey's gas station industry for compliance, and we encourage all employers to reach out to us for guidance. We offer many resources to provide employers the tools they need to understand their responsibilities and to comply with the law."
The Wage and Hour Division is committed to providing employers with the tools they need to assist them in fulfilling their obligation to understand and comply with the variety of laws the Division enforces. Employers who discover overtime or minimum wage violations may self-report and resolve those violations without litigation through the PAID program. For more information about the FLSA and other laws enforced by the Division, contact its toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Information is also available at https://www.dol.gov/whd including a search tool to use if you think you may be owed back wages collected by the Division.