N.Y. Body Shop to Pay $400K to Settle Wage Claims
August 16, 2018—A Smithtown, N.Y., auto body shop has agreed to pay $400,000 in back wages and damages to settle federal charges that it failed to pay 49 current and former employees overtime, the U.S. Labor Department announced Tuesday, reported Newsday.
Bi-County Auto Body has agreed to pay $185,000 in back wages, an equal amount in damages, and $30,000 in civil penalties to settle Labor Department charges that it failed to pay the workers overtime from at least July 2014 through April 2016, according to the report.
The settlement comes after the Labor Department sued the company last summer in U.S. District Court in Central Islip. The consent decree was approved by the court last week.
According to Newsday, complaint said the auto repair shop paid workers straight time in cash for every hour over 40 in a workweek. Federal labor law requires hourly employees to earn one and one-half times their regular hourly rate when they work more than 40 hours a week.
The company “falsified the payroll records in an attempt to cover up the violations," the complaint said. But the body shop kept separate records indicating the actual hours worked and the cash payments made, the complaint said.