Federal investigation recovers $374K in back wages, liquidated damages from New Hampshire employer who denied 46 home care workers overtime
MANCHESTER, NH – A federal investigation into the pay practices of a New Hampshire home care service provider that found the employer denied employees overtime wages has recovered $374,640 in back wages and liquidated damages for 46 healthcare workers.
Investigators with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division determined D+S Elder Services, based in Keene, violated the Fair Labor Standards Act when it paid employees straight-time wages for hours over 40 in a workweek, failing to pay overtime compensation as required by the law. The employer also did not pay employees for time spent traveling between worksites or track that time as hours worked.
“Too frequently, the Wage and Hour Division finds violations in the home care industry related to overtime and failure to pay workers for travel time,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Steven McKinney in Manchester, New Hampshire. “Costly consequences like those in this case can be avoided by employers who review their pay practices and our compliance assistance materials, and who contact us with questions.”
In fiscal year 2021, the division recovered nearly $14 million for 17,079 healthcare industry workers in 1,194 investigations. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that there were more than 2 million job openings for healthcare and social assistance workers in September 2022, and about 664,000 workers in those fields separated from their jobs.
“Healthcare workers often work long hours for low pay while providing vital services to the clients they assist,” McKinney added. “When employers deprive workers of their hard-earned wages, they make it harder for employees and their families to make ends meet. They may also make it harder for their businesses to retain and recruit the workers they need to operate.”
D+S Elder Services home healthcare workers provide companionship services and assist clients in New Hampshire with daily living activities such as bathing, light housekeeping and medication reminders. Learn more about minimum wage and overtime pay for direct care workers.
For more information about workers’ rights and other employee rights enforced by the division, contact the toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Workers can call the Wage and Hour Division confidentially with questions regardless of immigration status, and the department can speak with callers in more than 200 languages. Learn more about the division, including its search tool to learn if you are owed back wages collected by the division.
Help ensure hours worked and pay are accurate by downloading the department’s Android and iOS Timesheet App for free.