Nearly $170,000 Recovered On Behalf Of Roofing Workers Improperly Denied Overtime In New York
On March 7th, 2023, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced that it recovered $166,832 in compensation on behalf of several dozen roofing workers in New York. The DOL determined that Lakeside Roofing & Contracting LLC—a company based in Ontario County—improperly paid straight time wages to workers for travel time and for work in excess of 40 hours in a week. Here, our Monmouth County unpaid overtime lawyers discuss the enforcement action in more detail and explain the key things that workers should know about overtime protections under the FLSA.
Allegations: Employer Called Workers “Members”, Failed to Pay Overtime
The DOL notes that Lakeside Roofing & Contracting LLC operates under the business name “Lakeside Kanga Roof.” According to investigators, the company told its roofing workers that they were not being considered “employees” or “independent contractors.” Instead, the company stated that it viewed its workforce as “members” of the company, because of their buy-in to its core mission. In its enforcement action, the DOL is very clear: This is not a valid legal status for the purposes of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
Pursuant to federal regulations, the roofing contractors in questions (53 in total) should have been classified as employees. Further, they should have been paid overtime in accordance with the FLSA as the nature and duties of their employment did not make them eligible to be considered overtime exempt workers. The DOL cited Lakeside Roofing & Contracting LLC for recordkeeping violations and for failure to pay proper overtime. In total, the federal agency collected $166,832 in back wages on behalf of the 53 affected employees.
All Workers In New York Should Know their Rights Under the FLSA
A federal wage and hour law, the FLSA is the primary statute that protects the overtime rights of workers in New York. Under the FLSA, non-exempt employees have certain rights when it comes to overtime pay. Here are the essential things that workers in New York should understand:
- Non-exempt employees are entitled to overtime pay of at least one and a half times their regular rate of pay for any hours worked over 40 hours in a workweek.
- There is no FLSA limit on the number of overtime hours that an employee can agree to take on;
- Employees are still entitled to get overtime pay even if the overtime wage is not authorized in advance;
- Employers are lawfully required to properly classify their employees. A worker cannot be wrongfully classified as an independent contractor or overtime exempt.
Speak to a Wage and Hour Lawyer in New York
At Poulos LoPiccolo PC, we are driven to protect the rights of workers across the full range of wage and hour cases. If you were denied overtime in violation of the FLSA, our New York wage and attorneys are more than ready to help. Contact us today for a confidential case review. From our Manhattan law office, we handle unpaid overtime cases throughout the wider region.