News Release

U.S. Department of Labor Finds a South Carolina Vegetable Farm And Packing Facility Violated Federal Overtime Requirements

PELION, SC After an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD), Walter P. Rawl and Sons Inc. – the operator of WP Rawl in Pelion, South Carolina – has paid $101,572 in back wages to 408 employees for violating the overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

WHD investigators found the employer failed to pay employees for work they performed before or after their scheduled shifts while putting on and taking off required personal protective equipment. This practice resulted in violations when this unrecorded and unpaid time occurred in workweeks that totaled more than 40 hours and the employer failed to pay overtime.

“Employers are required to record and pay employees for all of the hours that they work,” said Wage and Hour District Director Jamie Benefiel, in Columbia, South Carolina. “When unpaid work time pushes an employee into an overtime situation, the liability for the employer can add up quickly. The U.S. Department of Labor encourages employers and employees to contact us with any questions they may have and to make use of the valuable resources we provide to help them understand their rights and obligations under the law. Violations like those found in this case can be avoided.”

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.

Agency
Wage and Hour Division
Date
December 12, 2019
Release Number
19-1878-ATL
Contact: Michael D'Aquino
Contact: Eric R. Lucero
Phone Number
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