U.S. Department of Labor Investigation Results in Bayonet Point, Florida, Construction Contractor Paying $33,795 in Back Wages, Damages
BAYONET POINT, FL – After an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD), Bayonet Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning LLC – based in Bayonet Point, Florida – has paid $33,795 in back wages and liquidated damages to 57 employees for violating overtime and recordkeeping provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
A WHD investigation determined Bayonet Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning LLC – operating two Florida locations in Brandon and Clermont – issued technicians and installers’ payroll checks for the hours that they worked, and separate bonus or commission payments based on additional services offered to the customers. The employer violated FLSA overtime requirements when it failed to include those bonus and commission amounts in the calculation when computing employees’ overtime rates when they worked more than 40 hours in a workweek, instead basing overtime only on employees’ base pay. This exclusion resulted in the employer paying overtime at rates lower than those required by law.
WHD investigators also found that the employer paid some employees a second, separate check for welding jobs they performed aside from their primary payment for their technician and installation duties. The employer failed to add the hours spent welding with the hours spent in technician and installation duties, resulting in violations when those combined hours totaled more than 40 hours in a workweek without the employees receiving overtime.
“Employers must track and total all the hours employees work to ensure they are paid overtime as the law requires,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director James Schmidt, in Tampa, Florida. “Other employers should use the results of this investigation as an opportunity to review their own pay practices to make sure they are in compliance. We encourage them to reach out to us with questions, and to use the wide variety of tools we offer to help them understand their responsibilities.”
The Department offers numerous resources to ensure employers have the tools they need to understand their responsibilities and to comply with federal law, such as online videos, confidential calls, or in-person visits to local WHD offices.
For more information about the FLSA and other laws enforced by the WHD, 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.
WHD’s mission is to promote and achieve compliance with labor standards to protect and enhance the welfare of the nation's workforce. WHD enforces federal minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and child labor requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act. WHD also enforces the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, the Employee Polygraph Protection Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, wage garnishment provisions of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, and a number of employment standards and worker protections as provided in several immigration related statutes. Additionally, WHD administers and enforces the prevailing wage requirements of the Davis-Bacon Act and the Service Contract Act, and other statutes applicable to federal contracts for construction and for the provision of goods and services.
The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.