US Department of Labor recovers $62K in back wages, damages for 22 Alabama gas station cashiers denied full overtime wages
BIRMINGHAM, AL – The U.S. Department of Labor recovered $62,568 in back wages and liquidated damages for 22 current and former cashiers of two Alabama gas stations whose operator denied them their full wages by paying them overtime at rates lower than the law requires.
Investigators with the department’s Wage and Hour Division found that Kwik Shop Stores Inc. failed to compute correct overtime rates and pay full overtime wages due at its locations in Wetumpka and Montgomery. The employer did not include bonuses paid in the calculation of the overtime rates of pay. By doing so, the Kwik Stop Stores underpaid employees. The employer also failed to accurately record employee’s hours of work. These practices resulted in violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act.
In addition to the recovery of back wages and damages, the division assessed Kwik Stop $8,228 in civil money penalties for the nature of the violations.
“Business owners who deny their workers their full wages make it harder for these workers and their families to make ends meet,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Kenneth Stripling in Birmingham, Alabama. “With job openings remaining at near record levels across the nation, employers are working harder to retain and recruit workers they need to help their businesses succeed. Those who fulfill their obligation and honor workers’ rights to full wages and benefits will have an advantage over employers who fail to do so.”
In fiscal year 2021, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the median hourly wage for cashiers in the gasoline industry – one that usually requires employees to work weekends, holidays and overnight shifts – was only $11.24 an hour.
BLS also projects more than 1.1 million job openings in the retail trade industry, creating an even more competitive labor market.
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. Download the agency’s new Timesheet App for Android devices to ensure hours and pay are accurate.
Workers can call the Wage and Hour Division confidentially with questions or concerns – regardless of their immigration status – and the department can speak with callers in more than 200 languages.