Learning from your own mistakes is a good thing, but it’s even better to learn from someone else’s and avoid them altogether. Today’s article is a cautionary tale referencing wage and hour violations made by multi-million dollar companies.
FLSA infractions committed repeatedly by large business owners can rack up sizeable fines. Consider these:
- Fed Ex agreed to pay drivers misclassified as independent contractors $240 million in back wages.
- After being hit with four class action suits, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles acquiesced to recompense $27 million in back wages and attorney’s expenses to staff members who claimed they were owed for wage and break violations.
- Walmart and Sam’s Club settled a $62.2 million FLSA suit for insisting upon off-the-clock work, denying breaks, and shorting workers overtime compensation.
- Bank of America and subsidiary Merrill Lynch made a deal to cough up $14 million to settle two overtime class actions.
If mega-corporations with massive HR departments, teams of accountants, and armies of attorneys are held accountable when they violate DOL regulations, it should concern SMBs with fewer resources. The DOL does not report details about its audits, but it’s evident that employers of all sizes are vulnerable to an audit—especially those in low-wage industries.
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