U.S. Department of Labor Investigation Results in Three San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants Paying $243,086 to Resolve Wage Violations
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – A restaurant enterprise with three locations in the San Francisco Bay Area will pay $224,465 in back wages to 25 employees after a U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division (WHD) investigation found the employers willfully violated the minimum wage, overtime, and recordkeeping requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Additionally, WHD assessed the enterprise $18,621 in civil penalties for the willful nature of the violations, and for a child labor recordkeeping violation. The restaurants are owned and operated by Anthony LoForte Sr., Anthony LoForte Jr., and Sherry LoForte.
WHD investigators found restaurants Zio Fraedo's in Pleasant Hill and Vallejo, and Zio's Pasta Pronto in Pinole, failed to pay employees for all of the hours that they worked, resulting in minimum wage violations at the Pleasant Hill location. Investigators also found the restaurants paid employees for their overtime hours in cash, off the records, at straight-time rates. The law requires payment for overtime hours at time and one-half employees' regular rates of pay.
"Employers must understand they are responsible to pay employees all the wages they have legally earned," said Wage and Hour Division Assistant District Director Alberto Raymond, in San Francisco. "Willful violations like those found in this investigation will not be tolerated. The U.S. Department of Labor provides many tools to help employers comply with the law, and we encourage employers and employees alike to contact us for assistance. We will continue our work to level the playing field for employers, and to ensure workers are paid what they have earned."
For more information about the FLSA and other laws enforced by the Wage and Hour Division, contact the Division's 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 www.dol.gov/whd including a search tool to use if you think you may be owed back wages collected by WHD.