News Release

U.S. Department of Labor Investigation Results in Bay Area Horse Training Facility Paying Employees $33,034 for Overtime

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – After an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD), Avalon Hunter Jumpers LLC – a Bay Area horse training facility – will pay $33,034 to seven employees for violations of the overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

WHD investigators found Avalon Hunter Jumpers LLC erroneously classified employees who groomed horses as independent contractors and, as a result, failed to pay those employees overtime when they worked more than 40 hours in a workweek. Instead, the employer paid employees flat monthly salaries without regard to the number of hours they actually worked. The Menlo Park, California-based employer also failed to record the number of hours employees worked, a violation of FLSA recordkeeping requirements.

Employers are responsible for ensuring that they pay all employees the wages they have legally earned, and for keeping accurate records of the number of hours they work,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Susana Blanco, in San Jose, California. “Other employers should take note of this investigation and ensure that their own pay practices comply with the law. The U.S. Department of Labor provides many tools to help employers understand their responsibilities. Violations like those 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 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/agencies/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
January 2, 2020
Release Number
19-1661-SAN
Contact: Leo Kay
Phone Number
Contact: Jose Carnevali
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