Florida-based home heath care provider Caring First Inc. has been slapped with a lawsuit by the U.S. Department of Labor for denying compensation to many of its employees, Law 360 (subscription required) reported. The plaintiffs claim that they were misclassified as independent contractors and were not paid overtime compensation as required by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.
The plaintiffs seek to represent employees since at least March of 2012 who worked in excess of 40 hours per week without being paid overtime compensation of time and a half. The Labor Department alleges that Caring First’s erroneously classified employees, particularly its licensed practical nurses and registered nurses, as independent contractors. These employees were paid a flat hourly rate, regardless of the number of hours they worked.
The Labor Department is seeking three years of back pay and liquidated damages on behalf of the employees, and is also pursuing charges against the company’s owner/president and its vice president.
Misclassifying an employee’s status is just one way in which employers engage in wage theft. If you suspect that your employer has unlawfully withheld compensation or failed to pay you fairly for your hard work, please contact the attorneys in Sommers Schwartz’s Employment Litigation Group today to discuss your situation.