South Florida frozen custard franchisee pays more than $15K penalty after allowing 14- and 15-year-olds to work outside legally permitted hours
Employer: Ice Custard Hialeah LLC – operating as Rita’s Italian Ice
Investigation sites: 3011 East Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale 33316
18451 NW 67th Ave., Hialeah 33015
313 Johnson St., Hollywood 33019
6782 Collins Ave., Miami Beach 33141
9461 Harding Ave., Surfside 33154
Investigation findings: U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators found the employer – a chain of frozen custard restaurants in South Florida – allowed 21 minor-aged employees to work outside of federally permitted work hours. Ice Custard Hialeah allowed 14- and 15-year-old workers to work more than three hours in a school day, more than eight hours on a non-school day and more than 18 hours in a school week. The employer also allowed the minor-aged employees to work after 7 p.m. while school was in session, as well as past 9 p.m. – all violations of the child labor provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act.
Investigators also found the employer failed to pay two employees for training hours worked, an FLSA minimum wage violation.
Back Wages Recovered: $217 in back wages for two workers
Civil Money Penalties Assessed: The agency assessed a $15,414 civil penalty to address the child labor violations.
Quote: “Employers must familiarize themselves with the working conditions that come with hiring minor employees,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Daniel Cronin in Miami. “We encourage employers to access our Youthrules.gov website or contact the Wage and Hour Division to learn how to navigate working hours for minor-aged employees and uphold their obligations under the law when they choose to hire them.”
Background: Employers can contact the Wage and Hour Division at its toll-free number, 1-866-4-US-WAGE. Learn more about the Wage and Hour Division, including information about protections for young workers on the department’s YouthRules! website. Workers can call the Wage and Hour Division confidentially with questions – regardless of their immigration status – and the department can speak with callers in more than 200 languages. Workers and employers alike can help ensure hours worked and pay are accurate by downloading the department’s Android Timesheet App for free.