WHD News Release: [01/03/2013]
Contact Name: Ted Fitzgerald or Andre J. Bowser
Phone Number: (617) 565-2075 or x2074
Release Number: 12-2135-NEW
3 restaurants in Nassau and Westchester counties ordered to pay $1 million to 255 underpaid employees following US Labor Department investigation
Asian Moon and Golden Rod restaurants also will pay more than $98,000 in civil money penalties for minimum wage, overtime, recordkeeping violations
WESTBURY, N.Y. A chain of three full-service restaurants in Nassau and Westchester counties and its president will pay $1,085,752 in back wages, interest and liquidated damages to 255 employees, according to the terms of consent judgments obtained in federal court by the U.S. Department of Labor. Defendants Asian Moon Restaurant of Massapequa Park Inc., Asian Moon Restaurant Corp. in Garden City, Golden Rod Restaurant Corp. in New Rochelle and Vickie Sue Li also will pay $98,231 in civil money penalties and interest for violations of the federal Fair Labor Standard Act's minimum wage, overtime and record-keeping provisions. The judgments resolve lawsuits filed by the department that were based on investigations by its Wage and Hour Division.
Investigators from the division's Long Island and White Plains offices found that employees working as servers and kitchen staff at all three locations were paid wages which did not equal at least the hourly minimum wage and did not include proper compensation for overtime hours worked beyond 40 in a week. In addition, the defendants maintained false and incomplete records of employees' pay rates and hours worked.
"These workers suffered egregious labor violations," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "The Department of Labor is committed to using all tools available to recover workers' wages and ensure accountability under the law. By conducting FLSA investigations, we not only seek to assist vulnerable workers in sectors such as the restaurant industry, but also to level the playing field for all employers who obey the law."
The judgments, entered in the U.S. district courts for the Eastern and Southern districts of New York, require the defendants to pay the back wages and interest to the Wage and Hour Division, which will distribute the wages to the workers, and to pay the civil money penalties to the department. The judgments also prohibit the defendants from future violations of the FLSA's minimum wage, overtime and record-keeping provisions. Should the defendants fail to make timely payments, the department will file supplementary consent judgments seeking immediate payment.
The FLSA requires that covered, nonexempt employees be paid at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, as well as one and one-half times their regular rates for every hour they work beyond 40 per week. The law also requires employers to maintain accurate records of employees' wages, hours and other conditions of employment, and prohibits employers from retaliating against employees who exercise their rights under the law.
The case was litigated for the department by its Regional Office of the Solicitor in New York. For more information about the FLSA, contact the Wage and Hour Division's toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243) or the division's Long Island District Office, located in Westbury, at 516-338-1890. Information also is available at http://www.dol.gov/whd/.
Solis v. Asian Moon of Massapequa Park Inc., doing business as Asian Moon Restaurant, and Vickie Sue Li
Civil Action File Number: 12-CV-5169
Solis v. Asian Moon Restaurant Corp., doing business as Asian Moon Restaurant, and Vickie Sue Li
Civil Action File Number: 12-CV-5170
Solis v. Golden Rod Restaurant Corp., doing business as Golden Rod Restaurant, and Vickie Sue Li
Civil Action File Number: 12-CV-7673