U.S. Department of Labor Investigation Results in Tennessee Drywall Company Paying $103,300 in Back Wages and Liquidated Damages
HERMITAGE, TN – Vazquez Drywall has paid $103,300 in back wages and liquidated damages to eight employees after a U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division (WHD) investigation found the company violated overtime and recordkeeping requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). WHD also assessed the Hermitage, Tennessee, company a $2,424 civil penalty.
WHD investigators determined Vazquez Drywall violated the FLSA's overtime requirements when it inaccurately classified employees as independent contractors, and paid them piece rates or flat salaries regardless of the number of hours they worked. This practice resulted in violations when these employees worked more than 40 hours in a week, but the employer did not pay them overtime. The Division also found the employer failed to keep accurate payroll records for these workers.
"Employers are obligated to pay their employees the wages they have legally earned," said Wage and Hour Division District Director Nettie Lewis, in Nashville, Tennessee. "Even if employees are paid piece rates, or on salaries, they are typically still due overtime when they work more than 40 hours in a week. The outcome of this investigation serves as a reminder to all employers to review their pay practices to confirm that employees are being paid as the law requires."
For more information about the FLSA and other laws enforced by the Wage and Hour Division, contact the toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Employers who discover overtime or minimum wage violations may self-report and resolve those violations without litigation through the PAID program. Information is also available at https://www.dol.gov/whd.