US Department of Labor recovers more than $168K in back wages, damages for 17 Hattiesburg buffet restaurant workers denied minimum wage
Employer: Super King Buffet Inc.
Investigation site: 4591 Hardy St., Hattiesburg, MS 39402
Investigation findings: U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators found the employer paid some kitchen employees a monthly salary that allowed their average hourly pay to fall below federal minimum wage requirements, and violate the Fair Labor Standards Act. The employer also failed to provide evidence that it paid two servers their cash wage, which invalidated the claimed tip credit.
Back Wages Recovered: $168,864 in back wages and liquidated damages for 17 workers.
Quote: “Paying a worker a monthly salary does not relieve an employer from their obligation to pay their workers at least the federal minimum wage or overtime premiums, should those apply,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Audrey Hall in Jackson, Mississippi. “This violation is all-too-common in the restaurant industry and that must stop. Agreements with workers that violate pay practices governed by the Fair Labor Standards Act are illegal schemes.”
Background: Employers can contact the Wage and Hour Division at its toll-free number, 1-866-4-US-WAGE. The division also offers numerous online resources for employers, such as a fact sheet on Fair Labor Standards Act wage laws overtime requirements. Workers who feel they may not be getting the wages they earned may contact a Wage and Hour Division representative in their state through a list and interactive online map on the agency’s website.