Federal court orders Maryland eldercare providers, owners to pay $364K in back wages, damages to 132 underpaid workers
BALTIMORE – A federal judge has ordered four interrelated Upper Marlboro providers of assisted living, adult day care and transportation services to pay $364,604 – $182,302 in back wages and an equal amount in liquidated damages – to 132 workers after the U.S. Department of Labor found numerous pay practice infractions in a Wage and Hour Division investigation.
Specifically, investigators found Woodmore House Assisted Living Inc., We Care Adult Day Care Services Inc., Quality Connection Transportation Inc., GTerryD LLC and owners and officers Denson Terry, Gwen Terry and David Douglas violated the Fair Labor Standards Act by doing the following:
- Failing to combine hours and pay appropriate overtime premiums to workers who clocked in and out of the different businesses while performing similar duties.
- Not paying workers for all hours worked.
- Manually adjusting timecards to omit hours, and rounding down employees’ worked hours.
- Making improper payroll deductions, which dropped workers’ pay rates below the minimum wage.
- Paying workers for overtime hours at straight time, instead of time and one-half their required pay rates.
The court’s action resolves violations of the FLSA’s minimum wage, overtime and recordkeeping requirements that followed the investigation and litigation by the department that obtained a consent judgment.
In addition to the back wages and liquidated damages, the companies and their owners must also pay $34,430 in civil money penalties due to the willful nature of their violations.
Entered in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland Southern Division, the judgment also permanently enjoins the companies and their owners from future FLSA minimum wage, overtime and recordkeeping violations and prohibits them from discharging or taking retaliatory action against employees exercising their FLSA rights.
“Frontline care workers provide vital services for people who depend on them for basic living needs, yet these workers often find themselves shortchanged by their employers,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Nicholas Fiorello in Baltimore. “In this case, the companies and their owners showed a blatant disregard for the workers’ right to receive their full wages and willfully mismanaged payroll records to evade federal requirements.”
“The employer’s theft of wages earned by 132 of its workers is a reminder of the harsh realities faced by some of the most vulnerable workers in our communities. The recovery of unpaid wages and an equal amount in liquidated damages for these workers reflects the U.S. Department of Labor’s commitment to investigate such violations and obtain appropriate compensation for workers,” said Philadelphia Regional Solicitor Oscar L. Hampton III.
The division’s Baltimore District Office conducted the original investigation and the department’s Office of the Solicitor in Philadelphia litigated the case.
The FLSA requires that most employees in the U.S. be paid at least the federal minimum wage for all hours worked and overtime pay at not less than time and one-half the required rate of pay for all hours worked over 40 in a workweek.
Learn more about the Wage and Hour Division, including a search tool to use if you think you may be owed back wages collected by the division. Employers and workers can call the division confidentially with questions regardless of their immigration status. The department can speak with callers confidentially in more than 200 languages through the agency’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243).
Walsh v. Woodmore House Assisted Living Inc., a corporation; We Care Adult Day Care Services, Inc., a corporation; Quality Connection Transportation, Inc., a corporation; GTERRYD, LLC, a corporation; Denson Terry, individually, and as Chairman and owner of the aforementioned corporations; Gwen Terry, individually, and as President and owner of the aforementioned corporations; and David Douglas, individually, and as Vice President and owner of the aforementioned corporations.
Civil Action No. 8:19-cv-01468